Happy New Year!
For all who are reading this – God has graced us with another day of life, and a new year to choose to do something new or better. My new year goals are very simple – I plan to become a better INVESTOR:
- Invest more in my relationship with God!
- Invest more in the study of God’s Word!
- Invest more in the things God cares about!
For a little over three years, I have been investing in quality time alone. It has been an adventure in digging deeper and unearthing the dead things lying beneath the surface. Normally, I end each year with time away from home to prepare for the new year, but that didn’t happen this year. Instead, God provided a ram in the bush that was far better than a trip away from home.
On New Year’s Eve, I had the pleasure of meeting with an African pastor and a stateside mission leader in preparation for my first mission’s trip abroad! Talk about a great ending to 2017! Our mission’s team was able to ask questions, listen to stories of needs, and how those needs are being met by mission efforts. I wanted to cry, both from excitement and of hearing some of the stories. It was definitely the fuel I needed to come into the new year with.
Today, I couldn’t wait to delve into the new year-long bible study I was starting. Titled “52 Weeks of Pursuit,” it is a 5-day, weekly reading through the bible, from Genesis to Revelation, with notes that provide wonderful insights into the bible. I invite you to join me in the reading – it’s an opportunity open to everyone by just clicking on the title above, then scrolling down to click on Week 1-4 and begin.
Already, my investment in reading and studying has paid off. I’d like to share just a few things I have gleaned from God’s Word using the guide of 52 Weeks of Pursuit:
Mankind is foolish! Our attempt to change the interpretation of God’s written Word is insulting to His holiness. One example is the foundation set for marriage which God has never changed: One man. One woman. One lifetime. Period! (Genesis 1:27-28; 2:24) [52 Weeks of Pursuit; page 1]. Although I fell short in this area, it makes God’s grace and mercy through salvation all the more precious!
God created man to have a relationship with him. The notes say: God beautifully offered man the opportunity to exercise his will by making his own choice concerning this relationship. [52 Weeks of Pursuit; page 1, last paragraph]. There were two trees and two choices. Just as the first Adam choose the wrong tree, man today chooses the world [Satan’s domain] over a relationship with God [through salvation].
We can run, but we can’t hide. In Genesis 3:8, “…Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.” Trees are a picture of man. Man’s attempts to hide himself in the world [amongst the trees of the garden] is sad. The substituting of good works while outright rejecting the good news will be exposed at the great white throne.
Satan’s tactics are transparent. It’s important to know how Satan operates. Genesis 3:1 reveals his tactics with these words, “…Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” Satan is transparent–he has always attacked God’s Word, and he always uses three effective traps against man: (1) lust of the flesh, (2) lust of the eyes, and (3) the pride of life. On page 2 of 52 Weeks of Pursuit, in the last two paragraphs, we are provided a great example of one who falls for Satan’s trap versus one who resists Satan’s attack in comparing Genesis 3:13 with Matthew 4:1-11. Our greatest weapon against Satan remains the Word of God hid in our hearts to help us resist his temptations!
Day One of enlarging my investment portfolio has been an amazing day to set the tone for a wonderful 2018 year!
I invite you to stay tuned and join me in the 52 Weeks of Pursuit bible study. As well, I request your prayers and our support in raising funds as I and others prepare for our first mission’s trip.
Let’s set 2018 on Fire for Christ!