Here we go! We close a year and open another. Reflect on the past and look to the future. Flip the calendars! Out with the old, in with the new. Endings that lead to new beginnings. Hearts full of hope for the days ahead, even if the future holds so many questions.
My youngest daughter used to love playing 20 questions. We would play this fun game at the end of the day just before bed. This activity helped us learn what, and how, the other was thinking. As a result, it helped us grow closer and understand one another.
As we look toward the days ahead, we would be wise to ask questions and seek direction of our Creator before setting goals and forging ideas and plans. It’s unwise to plan and set goals without look to the one who created us.
We are created with purpose and meaning
Only in seeking Him and learning of Him do we see who we truly are, what we are created for, and realize purpose. Purpose is important. It gives direction and meaning to life. for our lives comes from the One who created us with purpose. He is the only One who knows the future.
So, how will we spend the next 365 days? We get 24 hours deposited into our daily time bank. And with it, His mercies new every morning. We are stewards of those, yet not always faithful in them. We can spend it unwisely and take His mercies and grace for granted, as if they don’t matter. Praise God, we can also learn from the past and grow!
Be intentional in looking behind & forward
A wise person is intentional and learns from the past. Spend some time reflecting on what is behind before sprinting ahead setting goals and chasing dreams. Grab paper and pen and take an honest look at the last year, the last month, or last week. Ask deep, serious questions. Since we are spiritual, emotional, intellectual, physical, and relational beings, these questions should include all these areas if we’re to have a holistic approach to life. Every area affects the other.
In remembrance of a favorite pastime, here are 20 questions to start. Don’t get discouraged if reading over these you see great need for change or growth. Recognition of that need is a vital part of success. Give it to God, ask forgiveness where needed, and allow Him to direct our steps and days. As a result, we are already on our way to growth.
- How is my prayer life? Does it show dependance on God?
- Do I prioritize God’s Word, reading it, meditating on it, studying it?
- Have I trusted God? What ways is this evidenced?
- Have I been a good steward of God’s gifts within me for His glory?
- Have I been a good steward of my finances?
- How intentional am I about how I spend my time?
- Am I spending too much time on social media, internet & electronics?
- Have I made eating healthy a habit?
- Do I get the appropriate amount of sleep each night?
- Do I take time to rest and recharge?
- Is my work productive?
- How do I stimulate my mind to keep it sharp?
- Is my thinking godly? Or is it more worldly?
- Is my family a priority? Am I serving them well?
- Have I met any new people this year?
- Am I connecting with the people God has put in my life?
- Are there relationships that need to be strengthened or taken deeper?
- How do I serve others?
- How do I stimulate or practice thankfulness in my life?
- Have I made anything or anyone an idol in my life?
This is not exhaustive by any means. However, it is a good start to help us evaluate our lives and seek to walk forward on God’s agenda.
What areas was there growth last year?
What areas need work and growth?
Today can be a new start
The new year is a certainly great time to do this, but we begin a new day every day. And in that, there is possibility. Remember, any day is a good day to begin. But the best time to start is today. The sooner begun, the longer we have to live a more joyful and purposeful life.
Lastly, remember the Lord’s mercies and put all hope in Him every day of the year. For He is the only hope that never fails. He is the author of it and the essence of it.
May this be a year of seeking the Lord in all things, following His purposes for our lives…by His grace and for His glory!