As we enter into a new year, it’s a good time to reflect on last year and see where we can change some things so that this year will be better. We all seem to strive for better health (lose weight, get in shape, eat right), for better financial health (get out of debt), a better family dynamic (spend more time with our families, be kinder), to be more generous(help others), and hopefully and most importantly, a more intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.
I would encourage you this year to make a habit of reading God’s Word in a systematic way. There are many good reading plans available that guide you through reading the entire Bible in one year. Find one that you are comfortable with, and a version of the Bible that you are comfortable with and discipline yourself to do it. Spend time with the Word, and in prayer and meditation with God each day.
Andrew Murray in his work “The Deeper Christian Life,” tells us:
“The first and chief need of our Christian life is, Fellowship with God.
The Divine life within us comes from God, and is entirely dependent upon Him. As I
need every moment afresh the air to breathe, as the sun every moment afresh sends down
its light, so it is only in direct living communication with God that my soul can be strong.
The manna of one day was corrupt when the next day came. I must every day have fresh
grace from heaven, and I obtain it only in direct waiting upon God Himself. Begin each
day by tarrying before God, and letting Him touch you. Take time to meet God.”
God grants us new mercies each day.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9
Today, I would encourage you to confess your sins to Him, so that you are clean!
The reading plan that I am using for this year starts at the very beginning, Genesis 1-3. The Word tells us of the creation story. God created heaven and earth and everything in it, including man. Mankind was created in the perfect image of God! We are intended to be His Image bearer. In the story of the fall in chapter 3, the image was marred by sin. Adam and Eve didn’t trust God to supply their needs. They wanted more.
When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are to work the rest of our lives to try restore the image of God. It can only be done through trusting Jesus with all that we are and have, and living a life lead and filled by the Helper, the Holy Spirit.