Sunday, January 27, 2013

2013 - A Successful Year in the Making

I've made some commitments for 2013.  I guess most people will call them New Year's resolutions, but I'm calling them commitments.  I haven't done that well on keeping my resolutions, so I'm committing to these commitments!  (-:  I want to end 2013 better off than I was at the end of 2012.

I know what you're thinking.  I bet you're thinking something like, "She's got a weight loss goal like everyone else.  She's going to get fit."  Well, that would be semi true, but actually, my main goals are spiritual goals.  You see, in 1 Timothy 4:8 it says that physical exercise is good, but spiritual exercise is even better.  I am making some spiritual goals.  I want to purposely set out to grow in my faith this year.

And what are those spiritual goals?  My first goal is to re-read the Bible this year.  You know, if you read the Bible for 30 minutes a day you can read the complete Bible seven times in one year!  Wow!  Why don't we do this every year?!?!?!?  I was given a Daily Walk Bible, and I'm going to use it to guide me through the entire Bible.  It's only taking me a few minutes each morning and I can tell you I feel like I've already grown in my faith.

Secondly, I'm going to commit to memorizing scripture.  This is harder for me, but I've found that hiding God's Word in my heart is very useful in helping me conquer my sins.  For example, when I am fearful I like to recite Jeremiah 29:11.  It says God has GREAT plans for me, and plans not to harm me but to give me a hope and a future.  When I'm feeling defeated I like to think about Romans 8 and the verse that says, "If God is for us, who can be against us?"   God's Word is truly a lamp for our feet and a light for our paths.  As my children memorize scripture for school each week, I'm going to memorize those scriptures with them.

What are your goals for 2013?  Have you thought about making spiritual goals this year?  What if we all purposely set out to be closer to God in 2013 and actually accomplished that goal?  Heck, what if we all set out to accomplish that goal and only got 1/2 way there?  We'd still be better off than we were in 2012!

Jesus, thank You for loving me.  Thank You for giving Your life for me.  I love You dearly and I want to be closer to You each day.  I need You, Lord.  I commit to following You in 2013.  I commit to running to You and Your Word for comfort and knowledge.  You are my hope.  Help me, Lord. ~ Amen

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Being Thankful in ALL Circumstances

Well Happy New Year!  2013 is off to a great start, with one exception.  The flu has hit the Blakeslee home.  (long sigh.......)  We all had our flu shots, but apparently this year that wasn't quite enough.  My son came down with a high fever this past weekend, and since then I've played nurse, got up in the middle of the night to check on him and give him medicine, put Lysol on more door knobs and light switches than my husband would say is necessary, cancelled appointments, rescheduled appointments, and a multitude of other typical chores that go along with being a wife and a mother.  

When the doctor confirmed he had the flu, I was frustrated.  I'm sure I rolled my eyes and started thinking of how inconvenient this was going to be.  I had plans for this week and they did NOT include the flu.  This was going to be tough for me!  

Interestingly enough my son, the one with the 103 degree temperature and the flu, didn't react the same way I did.  When the doctors and nurses poked and prodded at him, he replied, "Thank you."  When they told him he had the flu he responded, "OK."  And yesterday, when he was laying on the couch he said, "Mom, I'm still so blessed even though I'm sick."  We were both walking this together, but his reaction was very different from mine.

Last week I taught a class of high school leaders to not have problems in 2013, but yet to have opportunities.  This week I'm complaining about the problems that have just entered my life.  Do you see the "opportunity" here for ME?  What is wrong with me?!?!?!?  God did not give me a problem!  God loves me and only wants what is best for me.  I don't know why He allowed my sweet child to get the flu, but I know He only allows me opportunities to grow and He does not just throw problems my way to pick on me.  It took my son's attitude to remind me of what I had been teaching!

God, thank you for sending the flu to my house.  Thank you for the time I have had with my son this week and for the lesson I have learned through it.  Thank you Lord for growing me through opportunities, not problems.  Thank you, Lord, for healing my son and for protecting the rest of us from getting sick.  Thank you, Lord, for living in my son's heart and speaking to me through his little mouth. Forgive me for my selfishness and bad attitudes.  I love you and I want to be more like you.  You are the reason I can have joy in all circumstances.  For in You, there are MANY reasons for me to have joy. ~ Amen

 1 Thessalonians 5:18 "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus."