Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock Matthew 7:24
New Year’s Resolutions. Some people like them, some don’t. Some get encouraged by them; some see them as a set up for failure. Fresh starts, new beginnings, clean slates, mercy new every morning…this breathes hope.
This year instead of coming up with one word or making resolutions I can’t keep, I’m grabbing hold of a bible verse. It’s a familiar verse, one I could recite and tell you where it is in scripture, but it’s not become a part of me. I haven’t put this verse into practice and to be honest with you, it’s been a hard year. Not hard in the sense of trials or tragedy; overall, we are very blessed. What’s made this year hard for me is what I’ve been dwelling on. I’ve chosen to let my mind dwell on lies, doubt, things I can’t change, things I wish were, but aren’t.
Truth sets us free. Applying God’s truth is how we build lives on the Rock. We can study God’s word, be in bible study and know the scriptures; but it isn’t how much we know, it’s what we apply. This is a real danger of bible study, you can get head knowledge and not live it. I’ll never forget doing some purging in my home. Looking down I had stacks of bible studies scattered all around me. It was sobering. I gazed and thought, does my life and relationships reflect all this time spent in God’s Word? We must practice and apply or all we are doing is deceiving ourselves.
God’s word is powerful. As the Hebrew writer tells us, the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. So this year I’m grabbing hold of a verse that has the power to purify my mind and transform what I dwell on.
Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable–if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise–dwell on these things. Philippians 4:8
This is my verse for 2017. Praying about it, processing what it means, and practicing it. Can you just image with me for a minute the difference this truth embraced will make? By allowing God’s Word to work through the power of the Holy Spirit, my mind is about to get a makeover and some long time needed cleansing. I cannot wait!
How about you? What verse will you grab hold of this year to permeate your mind and transform your heart? I’ve listed a few to help get you thinking, but don’t settle or do to do. Ask God! Seek Him for what He would have for you. God’s word is powerful…more powerful than any word for the year or resolution. Power beyond the will power we muster up which fades over time. God’s word completes what it sets out to accomplish and promises to not return void.
Grab hold of a verse and experience enduring change that will last long beyond 2017.
- Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. – Proverbs 3:5
- It is better to take refuge in the Lord than trust in humans – Psalm 118:8
- I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. – John 15:5
- Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. –Ephesians 4:29
- I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. – Philippians 4:12
- Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will. –Romans 12:2
- Do not neglect your gift, which was given to you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. – 1Timothy 4:14
- My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. – James 1:19
- The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love – Psalm 33:5