Since my health has gotten back on track, the new year is off to a much better start than last year. I could easily characterize 2012 as the year of defeat, the valley of the shadow of death, or some other depressing description. But each reason for discouragement has been faced, and either conquered or eliminated. That is good news. Special thanks to the staff at Port Huron E.N.T and Dr. Brettschneider.
So in the spirit of Philippians 3:12-14, last year is now just that......last year. So what is going on for this year? How would you answer that question? One of the ways I usually answer that question in broad strokes is in terms of a spiritual growth plan.
Here is what mine looks like for this year...........2013
Growth in my walk with the Lord:
Continue Moravian Bible reading plan
Prayer appointment with a leader/week
Research Spiritual Direction
Growth with other Christians:
Have lunch guests at home every third Sunday
Lead weekly leadership huddle
Attend March biblical counseling conference
Growth with those outside the church:
Prayer weekly with Sharon for those we love
Develop 2 real friendships with those who have no church connection
Read “Speaking of Jesus” by Carl Medearis
I will keep you posted as things progress this year. One thing I am reminded of regularly, is that meaningful change or accomplishment seldom happens without deliberate choices and changes. What is God calling you to do or change?
Some fun stuff:
I am learning to use google+ and its video features as part of a weekly leadership huddle. It is fun interacting with 6 other leaders as we discuss our topic for the week. It has given me some great ideas for other group meetings I have here at church.
I am enjoying the chance to read Buildling a Discipling Culture and Covenant and Kingdom on my Kindle. That little gadget has become my favorite electronic toy. Check out www.weare3DM.com for more info about these resources.
Sharon and I are making plans to spend a couple of nights away in February celebrating our 34th year of marriage. I am fortunate to have such a great wife. I was looking at our wedding pictures last week. Well, let's just say things looked different back then, in more ways than one.
Some stuff that relates to following Jesus:
Perhaps you have heard me talk about how the Lord has challenged me to love my enemies......no, I mean actually love them. Ever find yourself reading a part of Scripture and not being real convinced that it is even possible, let alone necessary? So, first I had to repent of my lack of love for my enemies. Then, I had to go looking for some help in living this out in my life. In my research I came across some resources by Carl Medearis. You can check his material out at www.carlmedearis.com. I am just beginning his book Speaking of Jesus:The Art of Not-Evangelism. I will let you know how it goes.
Some stuff you can ask me about:
How is your exercise plan working out? (Catch the pun there?)
What did you talk about in this week's leadership huddle?
What is the latest lesson you have learned on loving your enemies?
How is your book coming along?
In closing, I want to encourage you to keep growing this year in your walk with the Lord. 2 Peter 1:3-11 tells me that when I commit to growing I am assured of having an effective and productive year.
May it be so for all of us.............
I'm Pastor Mike, and we'll see you Sunday if not before.