I start out each new year upside down. I fret about the resolutions I should make and then I rebuke myself for breaking them by the end of January.
This year’s list goes something like this:
- Start the year with a Daniel’s fast for 40 days to refocus on the Lord
- Live on a limited fast all year. No sweets, dairy, or white flour.
- Drink cherry juice and take my supplements.
- Exercise daily, especially my stretches.
- Write at least 5,000 words per week.
- Pray daily for open eyes for His Harvest.
- And of course, pray, worship, and study His Word more hours each day.
I praise God for His faithfulness to turn me right side up. As I was preparing this list, He reminded me to pray for my 2012 verse. Since 1995, I have asked the Spirit to guide me to a verse that will be the foundational word for my upcoming year. Each year He reveals a special verse and astounds me at how He orchestrates the whole year around that truth.
I have had eighteen years of seeing His Word come alive in my life. In 1995, I learned three components to living in His will. 1996, He taught me about faith being expressed in love. I learned to tremble at His Word in 1997 while in 1998 I discovered how to be a woman of truth.
In 1999 as I lead a huge statewide ministry He continuously proved His immeasurably more and in 2000 as that evangelistic ministry expanded, He was my good Shepherd guiding each step.
In the early 2000’s I learned the wisdom of being a peacemaker, how to walk in fear with an undivided heart, knowing Him through His sufferings and resurrection, and walking with Him in awe of His plan. 2005 and 2006 were all about worship while 2007 and 2008 were spent in His Last Discourse.
2009 was a year to see His glory and so it was with both our kids getting married. 2010 I was given His words to share with others and then last year I accepted His call to love in increasing measure.
Each year a new verse given for a new journey.
Every year I experienced victory upon victory as He fulfilled the promise of His Word. If I ever doubted what was happening around me, I only needed to be reminded of that special verse.
That’s when it hit me. Man-made resolutions are upside down thinking. We can’t make the guidelines for the year and expect God to adjust the universe to fit our plans. He’s God, we’re not.
Throw away your list of resolutions. Get on your knees before God and with the Word opened before you, ask Him to reveal a verse that shows His plan for your year. Keep asking and listening until He speaks. I can’t imagine a better way to start the year than with God speaking a truth that will be your banner as you march into the new year.
This year, my verse is John 4:34 “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”
Food is defined as any nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink, or that plants absorb, in order to maintain life and growth. Food is what keeps me alive. Jesus said what sustained His life was finishing the work of God. He never went hungry.
I will never go hungry, whether in meager or much, as long as I rely on the fulfillment of His work to sustain me. He put it in simple terms for me: obedience is spiritual food. Obedience maintains my life.
This year has loads of promises and questions:
- Probably going to have some frequent fasting times.
- I’m going to see a harvest!
- Wonder where I’m being sent to do His will?
- Finish, hmm wonder what work is going to be finished? I hope it’s the four books I have started.
I can’t help but wonder about how this verse is so closely related to my life verse. 1 Corinthians 9:27: No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
We receive the prize at the finish line of every race.