I don't do New Years resolutions. Partially because I feel like they're cheesy and partially (probably the bigger part) because I try to be a realist and expect things to maybe not work out so that if they don't work out, I won't get upset, but if they do work out, well great news! SO, I wouldn't call this a New Year's resolution, but just something I've been needing for a while. Structure in my time with the Lord. It was so easy (and "baby food-ish) for me to just alternate my favorite passages that I like to read, and use those as my time with the Lord. But, I wasn't consistent. And I wasn't spending good quality time, it was more like a checklist (so easy to fall into that sort of time with Him right?).
I came across the reading plan through Charlotte and also through a friend from school's twitter (ironic, yes. Twitter does have benefits). It is a discipleship bible reading journal and it takes you through the whole Bible in a year! Which is something, as a 20 year old that has grown up in the church (ish, I have actually never done. So I'm doing it now!
The best part is that it leaves 5 days of make up or catch up in case you don't get to all of it, which honestly who could? It's been a challenge for sure for me. But I've really enjoyed it! January led me through half of Matthew, half of Acts, part of Psalms and all of Genesis. I really enjoyed reading parts of Acts. I honestly don't think I have ever looked into Acts until this month. Seeing how the church was meant to be set up and how the disciples did ministry makes me realize how bad of a job I do at what the Lord has called us as Christ-followers to do.
Two things I wanted to share.
1.First, is a verse I promise you I read for the first time, but am so thankful to have been shown.
"He said to them (aka each one of us even now), It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes to you."
I feel like the Lord just took my face in His hands, turned it directly towards Him and said "Hey, fool! Quit trying to figure out what's up and when things are going to happen. I've already decided and picked things out for you, but I don't wanna tell you yet! So just have faith and trust me, You're strong enough to wait and be patient, cause I've given you the Holy Spirit! So don't be afraid, and quit freaking out. I've got it under control."
2. Second is the differences that THE BIBLE , in Acts, gives between the pharisees and the disciples.
Pharisees-jealous(5:17), stiff-necked with impure hearts(7:51), resist the Holy Spirt(7:52),receive the law but do not obey it(7:53),boasted that he was someone great(8:9),
Disciples- God-fearing (2:5), cut to the heart in response to hearing the truth(2:37), courageous(4:13),could not help speaking about what they had seen and heard(4:20), one in heart and mind with other believers(4:32), rejoiced after persecution(5:41),
There is more to come I'm sure. Reading those definitions of pharisees and disciples doesn't make me feel great. I am truly truly more like a Pharisee than a follower of Christ. But grace abounds! I can strive to be like Christ, like his disciples were. I can strive to be God-fearing, and courageous, and truth speaking. I can put off impurity and resistance to the Holy Spirit and pride. The Lord makes that possible.
The truths I have found just in one month makes me excited about digging deeper into the Scriptures.
More to come! I have been in a blogging drought lately, my apologies. I will attempt to do better. Maybe a picture post coming up? That could be refreshing.