New Year - January 2020

As we stand on the cusp of 2020, we wonder what the future holds, for us and our world. One thing is sure, it will be better with God by our side. This issue explores keys to making this year a fulfilling and happy one.

Stepping into the New Year

Stepping into the New Year

I recently read an anecdote about a teacher who took her primary school students to the assembly hall to attend a presentation. As they waited at the foot of the steps leading up to the stage, she asked, “Is anybody good at jumping?”

Quite a few young hands shot up.

Be Like the Master

Be Like the Master

The New Year is already here and I am still contemplating what my resolution should be. I am not overweight and I get enough exercise, so those won’t do for me.

I was actually thinking more along the lines of a spiritual goal or some personality traits that I could try to strengthen, some way to become a better person.

A Prayer List for the New Year

A Prayer List for the New Year

There’s something special about the beginning of a new year. Even though January 1st follows December 31st the same as any day follows the previous one, to many of us, entering a new year brings with it the feeling of a new beginning, a fresh start. Last year is now behind us, and there are new horizons ahead.

Keep Watch Over My Hands

Keep Watch Over My Hands

The Bible has a lot to say about the power of what we say. One of my favorite verses is “Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.”1 Obviously, the Bible was written before the current era of social media and messenger apps, so it’s silent about the potential to either help or hurt when I use my fingers to tap out messages. I recently had an experience that taught me that the biblical warnings about the tongue should guide me to text with equal prayerfulness and prudence.

Goodbye Past, Hello Future

Goodbye Past, Hello Future

Our future isn’t limited by our past. No matter what point we’re at now, the future is still as bright as God’s promises.

If you’re not where you want to be, there’s time to change that. It’s human nature to look back and have regrets about some of the things you did, or to wish you’d done things differently. God understands that and sympathizes. But don’t overlook the good that also came from those experiences—the wisdom, maturity, and lessons learned, which have helped to shape your character and prepare you for better things to come.

Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

There are some things I’m good at: I can clean, organize, delegate, and plan like a boss. I can cook well enough to get paid to do it, and I can write pretty well. But I have one skill that I haven’t yet figured out how to market, and when I do, I’m fairly certain it will make me rich. I can worry with such skill and creativity that I’m convinced it’s worth something!

Joy and Good Times

Joy and Good Times

Here’s a great verse: “The people of Judah and Israel were as numerous as the sand on the seashore; they ate, they drank and they were happy.”1

I have years of Bible study and learning under my belt, but I’m not sure I’ve heard this verse before. At least, its meaning has always slipped past me.

God, Greek, and Great Hope

God, Greek, and Great Hope

In spite of every indication that there are difficult times ahead, I’m excited about this new year! I’m enthusiastic about striving for new goals and pushing myself beyond what I think I’m capable of. The noun “enthusiasm” comes from the Greek word enthousiasmos, from enthous, meaning “possessed by a god, inspired.” And interestingly, it was originally used in a derogatory sense to describe excessive religious zeal.

Resolutions

Resolutions

Question: I make resolutions that I feel will help me to be a better person, but no matter how well I start off, I can’t seem to keep up the momentum. What can I do to stick with my resolutions and get the results I want?

Resolutions and Results

Resolutions and Results

I watched an online video outlining several factors that are key to living an active, healthy life. One of the points was to compare the effects of sitting for long hours to the effects of smoking.

This issue got me thinking seriously about my daily schedule. Because of my work and online studies, I have to sit at a desk for long periods of time. I wanted to change that, so I decided to set a goal to lessen my sedentary hours.

New Year, New Soul

New Year, New Soul

G. K. Chesterton once said, “The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose, new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes.”1

Game Plan

Game Plan

Each passing year opens the door for the new, for the things that are to come. Every year brings with it new gifts and treasures, things that you won’t be able to hold in your hands or gain unless you exit through one door and step into the next one.

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