“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
We have begun a new year and left the old year behind, right? Not totally. It seems as though whether we like it or not our past can follow us. We can think we have left the past behind, but every time we turn around….there it is again, waiting for us….lingering there….hanging out in our thoughts. As discouraging as this can be, remember our God can take the past and lift up for us new life! Not all is lost! Not all is bad! Even what we may feel haunted by God can use for good. It is important as we take time to reflect on the past year to begin focusing on the good things which have taken place! Our life is built on the mingling of both good things as well as difficult things,…it is who we are! What is most important, it to realize our God is there at every turn.
As we start the new year of 364 Days of RE-purpose: Up-cycling our Ministry, we are beginning by REFLECTING on our past year. What was important? What changed you? What was GOOD? We will be looking at COMMITMENT, planning WITH God (and not all on our own), learning about DILIGENCE and thinking about the next RIGHT thing along the way will be.
In Advent we created a devotional in hopes to tie each of us deeper into our relationship with God and connect us to others at Bethel. The sermons are based on the themes in the devotional and our hope is to deepen each of us by:
LEARNING, CONNECTING and GROWING together. I have been moved by different stories of members as they have been using our simple devotional and taking just a few minutes every day to focus on the life-giving Word of God. The Scripture passages are easy. The questions are thought provoking.
The time commitment is what you want to make it. We may think our children or grandchildren don’t catch on, or it will be too difficult for them to focus with us “adults” on what the Bible says. I will tell you, this is the time, no matter their age to begin teaching your children through YOUR commitment. This is when the foundation is built. Your children are watching your actions and listening to you. Invite them to walk with you into the presence of God and help them find their place.
I have to share with you a story of one of our little ones. Kiera is so excited every evening to light the candle and do the devotions in the family. She waits for it and even encourages the family to begin. I am sure they thought it was just about “lighting the candle”, but how she shocked them. Kiera got situated with her Aunt and all of a sudden she began, “Dear Father, make your presence known to me.” The prayer had moved to her heart and she led the devotion. I pray you can invite your children into this gift! I pray you invite your family members into this gift! I pray you invite your neighbors into this gift! Join us and Kiera!