Friday, January 04, 2008

Resolve to Excercise

1 Timothy 4:8
Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come. NLT

My Divine Coach and Trainer,
Here I am – weak, out of shape and ready to get rid of the unnecessary stress and strain in my life. This year I resolve to get firm and fit with You. I know this fitness program will be extremely challenging, excruciatingly painful and very expensive, but the end result will be well worth it. Willingly, I’m surrendering my entire life to You, absolutely determined to improve my image from the inside out.

Giving You my best effort will be easiest if I have a few spiritual friends to train with me. Together, we’ll encourage each other to persevere through the pain and doggedly practice the difficult maneuvers You teach us. Shutting out every other thought, we’ll keep our eyes on You, and do exactly what we see You doing. As our hearts beat in rapid unison with Yours, we’ll breathe in Your sensational power and blow out Your extraordinary strength.

Frequently refreshing with Living Water from the deep well of our Bibles will make us excitingly different. As we monitor our hearts and measure our progress, the noticeable change will motivate us to keep working out our faith with fear and trembling. Under Your rigorous daily discipline, we’ll become firm and fit forever, taking on the strong physique of Your Son.

Going to the gymnasium is useful, but exercising a disciplined life with You daily is far more beneficial. When You are magnified in our bodies, we won’t be ashamed and will have the stamina to endure all kinds of problems and pressures. Others will instantly recognize the drastic improvement in us and naturally be attracted to Your fitness program too. Amen.

Have you resolved to get more physical exercise this year? God’s Word says that training for godliness is even more beneficial. What will you do to get firm and fit with Jesus?

Even if it’s as little as 10 minutes a day, you can’t afford to not train with Him. Find a study buddy and commit to working out together by doing a daily devotion. Share with each other what the Lord’s teaching you. Together, you’ll improve your image as you grow in His strength.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Galatians 5:25
Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Father in Heaven,
Thank You for compassionately choosing me to be Your beloved child and adopting me into Your great big diverse family when I was an utterly rebellious brat. When you found me I was absolutely loveless, kicking, screaming and demanding my own way. Fiercely in pursuit of fame and fortune, I was rudely pushing and shoving anyone in my path. My all-consuming desires were never satisfied! A mountain of putrid garbage had accumulated in my mind and soul. Amazingly, You picked me anyway, and sent Your infinitely powerful Spirit to tame me from my wild and wicked ways.

Vitally dependent on Your divine discipline to break my bad habits, I resolve to relinquish control of my life to Your Spirit this year. Fully submitted to Your authority, I’ll recognize Your commanding voice when I purposely read my Bible. Resolutely, I’ll follow Your step-by-step instructions for functioning Your way. With Your Words embedded in my mind, Your love will be behind my actions and Your power will control my egocentric desires.

Under Your wise counsel and watchful eye, I’ll learn to imitate Your unrestricted love. My heart will joyfully dance and my mind will peacefully sing as I tag along with You through all kinds of stress and strain. Firmly in Your grip of grace, I’ll persistently endure difficult people and situations by repeatedly demonstrating Your undeniable loving kindness. Making the most of every opportunity, I’ll welcome interruptions to help carry the burdens of others I encounter along the way. Trusting You to gently lead and guide me by Your Spirit, I’ll live a drastically different life that magnetically draws others to the life changing power of Your Almighty Spirit. Amen.

Will you resolve to live by the Spirit this year by fully submitting to His authority and respectfully following Him step-by-step every day?

Can people recognize you as a child of God by your attitudes and actions? If not, humbly admit that you’re a spoiled rebellious brat who needs tamed by His almighty power. Ask Him to teach you in the way you should go. Listen carefully to His instructions and willingly follow them no matter how difficult.

When you keep in step with the Spirit, the outgrowth of the Spirit will be love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Resolve to Live Differently

2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Dearest Father in Heaven,
I’m eternally grateful that You’ve saved my life by deliberately removing my dysfunctional, diseased heart and intentionally replacing it with the strong, healthy heart of Your dear Son. My heart now beats in vital unison with Yours. Since You munificently recreated my miserable old life into a magnificent new one full of love and power, I resolve to live a drastically different life this year by being:

Receptive of people who are fundamentally different from me
Empathetic, polite and kind rather than rude, arrogant and obnoxious
Content with the things You’ve given me instead of envying what others have
Recognizant of the good in bad circumstances
Ecstatic with the truth instead of misled by deception
Accepting of people’s faults as opposed to being critical and judgmental
Tolerant of abrasive people and harsh conditions
Even-tempered and calm even when I’m angry, resentful and mistreated
Devoted, protective, persistent, hopeful and trusting to the end

Thank You, Father, for opening my heart and implanting Your Son. Radically changed, I’ll graciously look beyond the diseased, dysfunctional lives of others. Generously, I’ll pour out Your infinite mercy and amazing love on hurting, helpless, and hopeless people bringing glory to You through the new life You’ve magnanimously given me through Jesus, Your Son. Amen.

O. Chambers writes in My Utmost For His Highest, “If you are born again, the Spirit of God makes the change very evident in your real life and thought.”

What radical difference has Christ made in your life? The above resolutions are from 1 Corinthians 13. Can you boldly stand in the light of God’s truths without squirming and evading them? If not, continue surrendering yourself daily to the Great Physician until His heart is fully implanted in yours.