Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- January 2, 2012
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
The new-year invites emotions of excitement in expectation of what God has in store for the next twelve months. There may be relief after experiencing a very difficult year-full of frustrations, failures, fear and loss. Or a sense of gratitude may be flooding a satisfied soul by seeing God work in incredible ways. Perhaps ringing in the new-year is a combination of celebrating Christ, while trusting Him for a hopeful future.
Wise followers of Jesus want what God wants for their family, faith and friends. We want His plan for which relationships to invest in over the next year. We ask Him who needs our attention, our prayers and our encouragement. It may be a struggling college student, a single parent on the brink of giving up or a friend emotionally and physically crippled by illness. God’s plan prioritizes people: their joys, their hurts, their faith, and their finances.
“Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people.” Ephesians 6:7
What else does the Lord have in store for you this year? Perhaps He is leading you to step into a new job opportunity. It may be a completely new career arena that requires new relationships and a new application of your current skills and past experiences. Are you willing to fully trust Christ with your job? Jesus was a carpenter by trade and a respected Bible teacher by training. Is He calling you to be better equipped in the Word of God?
The Lord’s prosperity may or may not include money. His plan of prosperity for you is hope filled and faith focused. Your gratitude to God brings emotional prosperity that expresses itself in generosity. Your fear of God’s glory brings spiritual prosperity that expresses itself in praise and worship. Your acceptance of God’s love and forgiveness brings relational prosperity that expresses itself in patience and grace toward others.
“The nations will fear the name of the LORD, all the kings of the earth will revere your glory.” Psalm 102:15
The Lord Jesus brings you healing, not harm. His plans for you include fulfilling work, real rest, and significant friendships, forgiving family members, laughter, weeping and trusting Him. You gain perspective on His plan through humble prayer, understanding and applying biblical truths, and collaborating with other Christ followers. Ask God to guide you in His game plan for the upcoming year. He will. He will but He wants you first.
“And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us.” 2 Corinthians 8:5
What does the Lord’s game plan of prosperity look like for my family and me?
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Your gratitude brings emotional prosperity that expresses itself in generosity. #gratitude
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