Daily Word Archives

Daily word from Open Door ~ December 2011


A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. ~ Proverbs 25:11

A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it! ~ Proverbs 15:23

It is interesting that in both of these verses, word is singular and not plural. We know this can mean more than just one word spoken, yet it brings to mind indeed just how one word or even just a gesture can bring peace, calm, reassurance and hope.

If someone is going through a rough time, a simple word, smile, pat on the back, or just showing up can touch the heart and soul of another.

This shows us how powerful and influential this realm can be. Yet because it is a relatively simple thing to do without a great deal of effort, we should be mindful to do more of it each day.

Let us give the gift of a "word fitly spoken" in abundance especially during this Christmas season.



Beautiful words by Charles Wesley

May "love divine" flow out of us to others especially during this season.

Love divine, all loves excelling,
Joy of heaven to earth come down;
Fix in us thy humble dwelling;
All thy faithful mercies crown!
Jesus, Thou art all compassion,
Pure unbounded love Thou art;
Visit us with Thy salvation;
Enter every trembling heart.

Breathe, O breathe Thy loving Spirit,
Into every troubled breast!
Let us all in Thee inherit;
Let us find that second rest.
Take away our bent to sinning;
Alpha and Omega be;
End of faith, as its Beginning,
Set our hearts at liberty.

Come, Almighty to deliver,
Let us all Thy life receive;
Suddenly return and never,
Never more Thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
Serve Thee as Thy hosts above,
Pray and praise Thee without ceasing,
Glory in Thy perfect love.

Finish, then, Thy new creation;
Pure and spotless let us be.
Let us see Thy great salvation
Perfectly restored in Thee;
Changed from glory into glory,
Till in heaven we take our place,
Till we cast our crowns before Thee,
Lost in wonder, love, and praise.


By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. ~ Hebrews 13:15

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. ~ Ephesians 4:29

For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: ~ I Peter 3:10

For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body. ~ James 3:2

All of these verses revolve around the things we say. Most of us have little problem talking, voicing our opinion, or just striking up a conversation. In the natural, we know how hurtful words can be. We know the damage they can cause people.

We easily see this on the negative side. The Bible has much to say about our words on the positive side as these scriptures above will attest. You do not have to be a Bible scholar to change your words for the better.

This is something that everyone can do - each of us can make a determined effort to improve in this area as we ask for God's help. Just a little improvement each day will show us good progress - to our blessing and to the glory of God.



We have noted that the book of Proverbs has 31 chapters - thus if we read a chapter a day we can read the whole book in a typical month.

If we look at chapter 4 today (because it is December 4th) we note a few verse that just seem to stand out.

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. Forsake her not, and she shall preserve thee: love her, and she shall keep thee. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her. She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee. ~ verses 5-9

The entire chapter gives us insight into the wisdom of God. If there is one thing we all need it is that wisdom - whether in the natural to know the right decision, which way to go or spiritually on how can I fulfill the calling of God to the fullest.

Wisdom has been defined as the ability to use the knowledge we have correctly. We can have a lot of facts and information at our fingertips. But it is the ability to put that knowledge to good use that will bring success and blessing.

We pray God would help each one of us in this area of our lives - especially if we have the motive to honor Him in all of it.


Many of us are already preparing for Christmas - some even have been at it for weeks. We know that we prepare for things that are important to us. Sometimes we do things "off the cuff" so to speak - but not the important things.

There can be so many aspects to our Christmas celebrations: family, friends, food, presents, Christmas cards, decorations, lights, a tree, activities, church services, Christmas programs - things like the Bethlehem walk in our area, Nativity & manger scenes. music and caroling - usually choral groups and musicians start working on music in September and October.

As Christians we know that it is not just about December 25th. It is the entire season of the year when we want to honor Jesus and commemorate His birth. We want to "spruce things up". We were blessed this morning to walk into a decorated sanctuary with flowers, lights, a tree, etc. - things that bring a sense of pleasure and joy on the inside because it is meant to bring honor and praise to our Lord. We are thankful to those who work hard to keep our church up and going and "spruce it up".

We desire that the outside decorations just be a reflection of our hearts and lives that would be a praise unto our Lord as well. That should be our desire everyday, but the Christmas season gives us the opportunity to make things look a little nicer to honor Jesus. We encourage everyone to make the most of the Christmas season in honor of Him.



This is a hymn that is fun to sing. We pray that it would be the cry of our hearts each day.

More about Jesus would I know,
More of His grace to others show;
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love Who died for me.


            More, more about Jesus,
            More, more about Jesus;
            More of His saving fullness see,
            More of His love Who died for me.

More about Jesus let me learn,
More of His holy will discern;
Spirit of God, my teacher be,
Showing the things of Christ to me.

More about Jesus; in His Word,
Holding communion with my Lord;
Hearing His voice in every line,
Making each faithful saying mine.

More about Jesus; on His throne,
Riches in glory all His own;
More of His kingdom’s sure increase;
More of His coming, Prince of Peace.



If you are responsible for the upbringing or teaching of children in any way, you know the need of a good foundation. In the natural we know it in all the school subjects like the basic arithmetic tables, letters of the alphabet and their sounds, basic parts of speech, the ability to write the letters of the alphabet correctly. etc. If the foundation is weak and not developed properly, the results of building upon it will not be impressive.

In the spiritual we should recognize that basic values, morals, character, and ethics must be developed in the right way to bring about good results. Regardless of how intelligent we are, these elements will make us or break us.

We believe in learning and developing skill in this natural world. We are here to produce and be a blessing. "... Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth." ~ Ephesians 4:28

If we can correctly combine the skill in the natural with Godly character, the life of Jesus on the inside, and the anointing of the Spirit of God, we are well on our way to show forth His praise and to make a difference for the kingdom of God.

"For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ." ~ I Corinthians 3:11, If we develop this first and foremost, we will then want to be all we can be - spirit, soul, and body. We will want to glorify God in every area and look for the opportunities to be a blessing to others.



Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. ~ James 1:17


God is good all the time - enjoy the video from Don Moen




The word "purge" in the New Testament is quite interesting. The common meaning is to cleanse, purify, rid and remove.

Note these verses regarding what has been purged by the blood of Jesus. It almost seems too good to be true:

Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; ~ Hebrews 1:3

How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? ~ Hebrews 9:14

For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. ~ Hebrews 10:1-2

But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. ~ II Peter 1:9

It is obvious from these verses is that God has done the ultimate to cleanse us from sin. This cleansing purged (got rid of) our conscience of sin. Our conscience should now be one of righteousness that is imparted unto us as a gift from Jesus. It is the reality we should be walking in more and more.

This is one of the joys of salvation. It is a release from the burdens of sin. It empowers you on the inside to believe the love that God has for us - because it manifests itself in our inward man who has become new in the righteousness of God. ~ Ephesians 4:24

Thus we do not take this grace of God lightly and continue to walk in sin. Lord show us how to "lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us" that we might "run" in this righteousness you have given us ~ Hebrews 12:1

We pray each one who reads will know the blessing of a conscience purged by the blood of Jesus and empowered by His righteousness.



May I always give my best to serve

My Lord - His Word to heed

From His direction never swerve

In my talk or in my deed

No matter what the circumstance

Or problems along the way

His presence always my life enhance

His mercy new each day.

Thank you Lord for victory

That I might not yield to sin

Your Word is a light unto my path

And Your Spirit dwells within

A faithful steward let me be

May I hear the words "well done"

The day I reach my eternal home

And bow before God's Son.



Anyone familiar with the New Testament knows that great emphasis is placed on love:

The greatest commandment ~ Matthew 22:35-40

God so loved the world ~ John 3:16

Faith works by love ~ Galatians 5:6

We demonstrate our discipleship ~ John 13:35

We show it in our daily walk ~ Ephesians 5:2

The list can go on. We should also realize that this love is more than the emotional and erratic ideas of love that we see in this world. This is the love of God that is put into our hearts by the Holy Ghost ~ Romans 5:5

This love rejoices in the truth and gives us the grace to share it because it is the knowledge of the truth that will set us free ~ John 8:31-32

It is especially critical in this day and time that Christians maintain their love walk. It can be a challenge in this world that is so confrontational, in your face, and increasingly hostile toward the gospel of Jesus Christ.

We want to share the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15) in a way that is effective in the lives of people - not because we are angry and upset with people. This will take prayer and a desire to hear from God on a daily basis especially as we deal with a world that is often antagonistic toward the things of God.

Lord help us to speak the truth each day - to share Your Word in a way that will be fruitful for the kingdom of God and in the lives of the hearers. May we be sensitive to the voice of your Spirit and be skillful in the Word of righteousness. Help us to walk in the spirit and not in the flesh. As we lift up Jesus before others, we pray that You will draw them to Yourself. We are joyful in the privilege we have to present the gospel of Your kingdom. In Jesus' Name we make our prayer, Amen.



Last Monday our general topic was "preparing" in light of Christmas. The point was made that we prepare for things that are important to us. We put little extra touches on things that are special. We take the time to make sure that it is done right. We usually appreciate it when we see people going out of their way to do something good.

It is interesting that Jesus said " In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you." ~ John 14:2  It would just be speculation if we tried to picture or describe exactly what Jesus is doing to prepare. But from our time frame, He has been at it for a while. We know from Revelation that some splendid and awe-inspiring things are described.

We see in Hebrews 11:16 that God has prepared a city for His people. Note I Corinthians 2:9 ~ "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."

Suffice it to say that there are some spectacular things awaiting the children of God ~ preparation is being made for our homecoming. Glory to God!



I Need Thee Every Hour is a hymn whose title reminds us of this important truth. Even if things are calm and not too intense, there is no one better to hang out with (to use today's vernacular). Jesus said the Holy Spirit would show us things to come (John 16:13) - everyone could benefit from that.

We are told in Proverbs 22:3 "A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished." Lord may we demonstrate prudence as this verse says that we may not be punished. Another word for prudence is discretion. Whether you search these words through the Bible or in a regular dictionary, you will conclude that they are beneficial to our lives - they will bring blessing.

As we recognize needs such as these in our lives, it reminds us to draw near to God. When we do, we demonstrate to God that we are serious and we consider this an important aspect of our lives. This is another way to ask, seek and knock - Jesus said this would bring a favorable response from God

Lord, we ask for Your grace to develop prudence and discretion to be successful in the challenges and uncertainties we face everyday. Help us to handle situations properly so that good and right results will follow. Thank you that our faith is the victory that overcomes the world (I John 5:4), that You always cause us to triumph in Christ Jesus (II Corinthians 2:14), and for providing a way out of every temptation (I Corinthians 10:13). For this we indeed need Thee every hour.



John Maxwell, a well-known man in the Christian leadership field, continually hammers this thought: One of our greatest missions as Christians is to add value to the lives of others.

This of course does not mean just to give people money. Giving someone money does not add value to their lives - it just gives them the ability to buy something. We know we are to help those in trouble and that may mean money from time to time. Yet we know that life is much more than the things we possess and the size of our bank accounts.

Many are discouraged today, have little zeal for life, and perhaps see little value to their lives. As Christians we know that the greatest way to add value to the lives of people is for them to be born again and become part of God's family. This will be the greatest enhancement they can know.

But often people just do not "jump right in" at their first encounter with the gospel. Billy Graham has noted that on average people have to hear the gospel about 7 times before they respond favorably. This of course is a generality but how many of us just took the plunge when we first heard? Yes it does happen and thank God for it, but it is often not the norm.

In order to add value to the lives of others, we need to show them that we consider them valuable. That can be done by spending time with them, talking with them, and understanding what they are going through. In other words they are worth a little of our time. If people sense that we do not consider them worth our time, our witness is not going to be very effective.

All of us can show people that we care about them. As we discover what they are about, they will discover what we are about. We find out what they are interested in, and they find out what we are interested in. This gives us great opportunity to share what God has done in our lives. We can invite them to join us in our Christian activities and expose them to the things of God. All of us could do that.

This should certainly be on our "to-do" list. How can I add value to the lives of others, demonstrate the joys of the Christian life, and help them out in practical ways whenever possible.

This is a big part of living out the gospel.



Yesterday our topic centered on helping others, endeavoring to enrich their lives, and looking for opportunities to share the gospel with them. Remember what has been termed the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Notice this directly involves "others" as well. To carry it a little further we could say: Be unto others as we would have them be unto us.

This is somewhat of a play on words but the principle is sound. This can be a great help to us as so much of our lives involves interaction with other people. We constantly deal with circumstances and situations with other people - difficult and easy.

If you happen to be dealing with people under circumstances that are not the most pleasant, consider being unto them as you would have them be unto you.  You are at least doing your part, it will please the Lord, and it just might make a favorable impact on the other party.

Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. ~ Romans 12:21

Heavenly Father, show us how to walk this out each day.



For the last 2 days our topic has centered on "others".  This leads us into the concept of humility:

The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility. ~ Proverbs 15:33

By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life. ~ Proverbs 22:4

Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. ~ I Peter 5:5

We humble ourselves when we give attention to others and get it off of us. We are told to humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God. It takes humility to walk in faith and believe the Word of God when our minds and surroundings say otherwise.

We remind ourselves to walk in humility each day and not walk in pride. We pray to be teachable and not think we know it all. Yet we want to be steadfast and unmovable in the doctrines of Christ and what we know to be true from God's Word.

We ask God to help us demonstrate this in the right way each day. 



Each day is a new opportunity for us to make a difference for the kingdom of God. If we have been in the battle for awhile, the song below can be a great pep talk.


My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name.

            On Christ the solid Rock I stand,
            All other ground is sinking sand;
            All other ground is sinking sand.

When darkness seems to hide His face,
I rest on His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.

His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my Hope and Stay.

When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh may I then in Him be found.
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne.




This time of year we are reminded that many people deal with loneliness. It may be hard to imagine it with all the ways were have to interact socially, yet it seems to be a reality.


We believe the body of Christ is part of the answer that Jesus gave the world for loneliness. He is the main answer of course, but it is wonderful that He placed the church on this earth to minister to people in so many ways.


As we consider so many things this Christmas, let us reach out to those who may be lonely. May we take time in prayer to see if God would bring someone to mind who needs some fellowship, some time to just talk, or something to meet a need.


It is another way we have to share the love of God.




A few years ago we found a song that was meaningful for Christmas. We try to do it at church every year. It plays on the word "presents" that are often associated with Christmas. The song says to the Lord "I want Your presence for Christmas" instead of presents.


The words are below if you have never heard it, and the link at the bottom will let you hear it done by three girls on YouTube:


Your Presence For Christmas


 In   the   busy   Christmas   noise

All   the   lights,   the   bells,   the   toys

I   have   found,   You   are   the   only   source   of   comfort   and   joy



            Lord   I   want   Your   presence   for   Christmas

            I   want   Your   presence   for   Christmas

            I   long   to   hear   Your   Spirit   speaking   peace   to   my   heart

            Of   all   the   gifts   I   may   receive,   there’s   only   one   I   really   need

            And   it’s   Your   presence,   Your   presence,   for   Christmas

When   the   holiday   is   through   

And   the   year   is   fresh   and   new

What   will   linger   are   the   moments   spent,

My   Lord,   just   worshipping   You

Beautiful version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xxYU5HHW6E&feature=related



Often the subject of motivation comes up in life. The dictionary defines motivation as: the general desire or willingness of someone to do something. In general we know what motivation is and we certainly know what a lack of motivation looks like ~ we can pick that out very quickly.

We know that motivation often is associated with our feelings or desires. We can say in some ways that motivation is imposed upon us: We go to work or we will go bankrupt ~ this is often a quite effective motivator. However, if we constantly derive little or no satisfaction with what we are doing, we will often seek a change.

While the term "motivation" itself is not in the Bible, we have verses such as:

"walk in love..." ~ Ephesians 5:2

"ye have an unction from the Holy One ..." ~ I John 2:20

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works... " ~ Matthew 5:16

"For we are labourers together with God ..." - I Corinthians 3:9

"For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works ..." ~ Ephesians 2:10

The list will get long with verses that tell us we have a lot of work to do and how to do it. Christianity is the blueprint for the greatest work ethic imaginable. As Christians we should endeavor the be the best at our jobs, the people that demonstrate the fruit of the spirit, the kind of people the company cannot do without - this is practical demonstration of Christ in us.

This is not always easy of course with the world we live in today. But this alone ought to be good motivation for us to go out and make a difference in this world. We have been empowered to make an impact.

We pray each day that God show us how to do this.



Christmas is just days away

When Jesus in a manger lay

A star would guide the wise men to see

The Savior who was born for you and for me

Wise men still seek Him in 2011

Through Him alone can we make it to heaven

A wonderful gift God gave us that night

In a world full of darkness He gave us His light

The Gift is One Who keeps on giving

Each day a life that's worth the living

So on this Sunday the 25th of December

All He means to us - let's remember

And though the day might not be exact

The truth that He came - that is a fact

The story of the manger - that's just the start

For the story continues on as He lives in your heart



During the first week of December one of our topics involved what we do in preparation for Christmas. Much of it involves decorations and other things particularly meant to be seen. You have probably seen video and news casts that show houses lit up like airports and flash to the beat of a particular song. All of this is just part of the fun and festivities.

We also need to remember that not everything may work out or continue to function perfectly - why can't we get tree lights that will last more than a few days, I just cannot find the perfect gift, some of the folks cannot make it home for Christmas, I just burned half of the Christmas dinner, someone in the family has to work Christmas Day, etc. We do not make light of any of these scenarios as we know Christmas is special to many of us. It is often the one time of year when families can get together.

But we should remember that so much of it is the external. We know the true meaning is Jesus. We remember that people are more important than things. When things go wrong we do get frustrated but we do not want to let it ruin our Christmas.

Lord help me keep the right focus, to keep my joy when something tries to steal it, and keep my heart right no matter what. I remember that the coming of Jesus was announced as " tidings of great joy which will be to all people". May others see that joy in me this Christmas.



Christmas should certainly be a special time for Christians. It is the day we recognize the coming of Jesus to the earth. We also spend a good part of December dressing things up, decorating, cooking, and sharing love and kindness with others.

Because it is special, it would be nice to do something special for Jesus - determine to do something in honor to Him. This would be a great way to demonstrate our love for Him and it can be a good testimony to the real meaning of Christmas.

We pray God show us the best we can honor Christ this Christmas.



We are grateful for the opportunity to celebrate and recognize the coming of Jesus to the earth. His coming is more important than proving the exact day that it happened.

For Christians who do not like the Christmas celebrations, we wonder if you do anything to celebrate or recognize His coming. Is it important to you at all?

We grant that secular celebrations often go too far in the wrong way and show little if any respect for Christ. But that should not deter us in the least from showing Jesus we are forever thankful for His coming.

It is interesting that God did announce it on the day of His arrival. "For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord." ~ Luke 2:11. Heaven certainly honored the day so should we do any less?

We honor you Lord Jesus in celebration of Your birth into this world.



We want to say Merry Christmas to everyone and pray you have a wonderful day. We remember the coming of Jesus to the earth some 2,000 years ago. We pray each may experience His coming into your heart and life and His blessings, peace and presence be with you always.



There are many things we can learn from a study of the life of David. He is called a man after God's own heart ~ Acts 13:22.

One thing we want to focus on today is that David loved and sought the Lord from an early age. When the world would view him as a nobody, someone just to watch sheep; he was developing a Godly foundation. Note he did not wait to become king, become esteemed by the world, or become a part of the rich and famous to seek God and give Him praise. God was God regardless of the circumstances he happened to be in.

This is a great lesson for us. Regardless of the situations we deal with, God is still God, and we learn from the scripture what that means - all He is to us and has for us.

We recognize further that David was not perfect - he messed up big time. But the mess up is not His legacy. His legacy is one of giving his life to the Lord and what God was able to do through him. This certainly should give us hope as we know we can miss it and need to get back on track with our heavenly Father. We see this in David as well - he was quick to repent and get back on track.

May we always consider our relationship and fellowship with God as our first priority and not let anything damage it. We know the attacks come in our lives but we should not let them shake what we have in Christ Jesus. God help us to remain steadfast with You and abide under the shadow of the Almighty ~ Psalm 91:1



As we approach the new year, words like "steadfast" and "consistency" come up when we consider resolutions for 2012. We will write more about this as we get closer to Sunday, but the two words mentioned above are interesting.

When you think about it, we often apply them more to things than people. We really want the products we buy to be steadfast and consistent. That would be a great attribute for all the things we use and deal with on a daily basis. We want things we can count on.

In our lives we know the Biblical admonitions to stay true and steadfast in our faith and daily living. What we need to learn is to stay consistent when we constantly have to flow with changing situations.

We pray God show us how to do that on a daily basis. We are constantly faced with new situations, new technology, different ways of thinking, and circumstances we may have never seen before. So it is crucial that we be able to apply the Biblical principles that God has forever settled to our lives as we encounter so much change and variation.

The ability to do this would greatly enhance both the foundation and productivity of our lives.




Billy Graham recently stated that as he assessed his Christian life and service, he wished he had spent more time in prayer. Every Christian would likely say the same thing, and we certainly long to be more effective in this area.

Some of the most powerful words that Jesus spoke were in regards to our prayers, how important prayer is, foundational principles, and answers to our prayers. Yet even those we consider most knowledgeable and experienced in prayer still declare it to be a mystery.

This is likely because it is a supernatural exercise or endeavor if we can use these terms. It is something beyond the natural of this earthly existence. It is a way to communicate with God, tap into His spiritual realm, and be a part of Jesus' kingdom that He said was not of this world. Thus it will certainly be somewhat a mystery to our flesh and our minds.

Yet our spirits should rejoice as prayer takes us to the realm where our spirits are nurtured, energized, and able to fellowship with the Creator. Countless books have been written about prayer, how to get started, and how to develop our prayer lives. But none of us will get very far until we just jump in and do it.

We encourage you to find a Bible-based prayer fellowship - where your prayer life can grow and expand. We hope this would be in your church.

Prayer should certainly be a part of our to-do list as we enter into the new year.



In considering the coming new year, how resolute will we be with our resolutions? The term "resolute" is defined as: admirably purposeful, determined, and unwavering.

It usually has a positive connotation. Of course on the negative side we could say "hard-headed" or "stiff-necked". We do not want to be that.

The term "resolute" also brings to mind the concept of "determination". All of these positive qualities remind us that we face obstacles in this life, and often we must fall back on our "stick-to-itness". Sometimes we have to continue in faith believing the good things we sow into our lives and into the lives of others will reap good results.

It is amazing how one of these terms we are talking about leads us to another. The final one we will mention today is "decision". Life has been described as one decision after another. A decision is necessary before anything can be done.

Because decision-making is so important, we should strive to be skillful at it. What a good prayer to pray as we begin the new year: Lord help me to be skillful in making right decisions.




We have been talking about our new year's resolutions the past few days. We know that many of them do not last long or we are not as diligent as we should be in carrying them out.

One reason might be that we do not give much thought or planning to our resolutions. Sometimes we just jump right in and try something, endeavor to solve a problem, etc. Our intentions may be good, but we usually need to address these areas on more than just a whim.

Usually these areas are things in our lives that have become habits that are detrimental or just time-wasters. If we are serious about making some changes, we should both pray and do some research so that we can deal with theses areas effectively.

There is just great satisfaction in achieving success and good results.



We have come to the end of another year. Have you ever heard a football coach tell his players: When the final whistle blows and you walk back to the locker room, leave the game on the field. That may be too simplistic but the coach is trying to remind the team that the game is over.

In regards to the year, we could say it like this: 2011 is over - let it end. For many the 2011 year was rough and they have noted that they are looking forward to the new year and putting this one behind them.

As much as possible, we encourage you to let 2011 end. We know that people will still deal with things that are ongoing from 2011 - but do not live in the past year. Move on into 2012. As Paul stated: "Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." ~ Philippians 3:13-14.

We might say it this way: I do not have everything down pat, but I am pressing forward to the good things God has for me in Christ Jesus. Lord help me to tie up any loose ends that I can, so that I may be able to move forward unhindered.

May the Lord richly bless you as you enter the new year with Him.

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