No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.~ Philippians 3:13-14
As 2013 comes to a close we offer encouragement as you set your heart on what God has planned in the upcoming year. The team at CLA is praying over all the leaders and organizations in the alliance. We stand united and believe God’s best will unfold for each of you.
Here are 10 final steps to ensure you are moving towards the extraordinary work of God in you, your ministries and all those you are called to reach.
Understand where you’ve been. List what you’ve learned and how it impacts where you feel called to go. Accept that God’s sovereign and that everything experienced in 2013 had a purpose that points to the future.
Jeremiah 29:11~ “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Think deeply about the defining moments from the past year. Wait on God to show you the before and after affect on your thinking, being, and doing. Let yourself be grateful for each of them and the way they altered the direction of your life.
Psalm 37:7 ~ Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Take a truthful inventory of your heart. Ask God to show you the pleasing and not so pleasing parts. Reconcile the misses and determine to go forward with the power of the Holy Spirit as your guide.
Hebrews 12:10-11 ~ They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
Map the key decisions you made this past year and list the outcomes realized because of them. Accept responsibility for them and own the ability to redirect them as Wisdom leads you.
Ezekiel 36:25-27 ~ I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.
Take a stand for what you want to continue to do and what you want to change. Exercise the power of your word and put into practice how you will daily honor it.
Proverbs 16:3 ~ Commit your works to the Lord, And your thoughts will be established.
Seek God’s Word, experts, or the counsel of wise leaders regarding the areas where you know you need to grow. Examine all the alternatives before putting plans into place. Investigate before you navigate.
Ephesians 4:21-24 ~ if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man who grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man who was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
Create an outline for the year. Identify benchmarks and timelines for key goals or accomplishments. Then surrender all of it to God for His shaping and perfecting.
Proverbs 19:21 ~ There are many plans in a man’s heart, Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand.
Bring order where it’s needed. Clean up and clear out the unnecessary things in your life. Simplify where possible and eliminate the clutter that’s prone to distract you.
I Corinthians 5:7 ~ Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.
Look to those you trust to hold you accountable. Ask them to collaborate with challenge you often about the intentions of your heart. Look to support as well as be supported.
Hebrews 10: 24-25 ~ And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
Define what beginning looks like as specifically as you can. Lean in and position yourself for forward motion. Set the alarm for “GO” and be ready when it rings. Trust God to get you where He wants you to be.
Ecclesiastes 3:11 ~ He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
Blessings and Happy New Year
from the Staff at CLA