Hey it is still January, I can still talk about “changes in 2011” right?
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 : 3 For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
Read verse 5 again: We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
In order to demolish strongholds in our lives and in the world around us we must take our thoughts captive for Christ; we must think on the good and not the world. We must study; we must be ready to serve.
Not only are we challenged to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17) but also to study God’s Scripture (see matt 4:4 for example). This is a real focus for me in 2011 (still 🙂 January, remember :)).
“Written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart” (2 Corinthians 3:2, 3). God’s Word needs to be in our hearts and in our minds as absolutely as Humpty Dumpty or “not by the hair of my chinny chin chin” – God’s very Word needs to be second nature to us. His Words need to come to our lips with out us even consciously putting forth effort; faced with a challenge we should be praying and speaking the Word before we even realize it.
I really hunger for more of God in my life and I realize that the best way to hear God more is to saturate my mind with His Text, with His Thought and His Language and His Message. I need to know Father God as readily as I know Mother Goose. More scripture: not just reading, but studying. Making His gift of communication a part of me; written on my heart; instinctively to my thoughts and to my lips. This is a challenge for me, I can read, but to actually dive into it, to study, that is much more difficult in my life during this season.
God told Ezekiel: “Son of man, receive into your heart all My words that I speak to you, and hear with your ears. (Ezekiel 3:10).
By our fruit are we to be known. James tells us in the first chapter that we must receive the word of God into our hearts like a seed so it can produce fruit in our lives: “Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does” (James 1:21-25). I am sure we all remember what happens to the trees that produces bad fruit (Matthew 7:19).
So it is painfully obvious to me I need to do more, spend more time with God, to beg Him to scribe on my heart and to guide me fee that I might be part of the bountiful harvest.
Step 1: Memory:
“You shall lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul” (Deuteronomy 11:18).
Inspired by: http://blog.lproof.org/2010/12/siesta-scripture-memory-instructions.html but in no way feeling I can commit to be part of that group, especially if this year turns out like I hope and pray it shall – I am going to try this on my own; my personal goal is 15 memory verse in 2011. That is a bit more than one a month, next year (2012) I plan to set my goal at 24 verses – 2 a month.
More soon about my method, I am still working on that. I did not grow up memorizing Scripture, and my experience with good solid memory work lies more in Poe then Corinthians. I need to work on that.
Step 2: Reading:
“Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You” (Psalm 119:11).
I had actually started a ‘read the entire Bible in 2011’ personal attack plan before reading her post, but it did certainly encourage me. As with the memory challenge above I am not going to join anyone accountability group. Again, I am hoping this year is topsy-turve in a great, but very challenging manner, and I hesitate to add more stress or ‘load’ to myself.
90 days is just too fast, too big a commitment for me, personally, at this point in our family life. ”It takes about 45 minutes to an hour and 15 minutes each day to read, depending on your speed” and I just do not have 45 to 90 each day to read, I think God understand that, after all He gave me these children.
Remember the words of Christ in : John 5:39 You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me,