January, 2023 – A Blessed and Happy New Year to You!

January, 2023 – A Blessed and Happy New Year to You!

Mygoals.com once released its annual predictions of the types of resolutions people are expected to make in the New Year.  They are broken down as follows:

– 22% of resolutions involve health and fitness

– 18% career

– 15% personal growth and interests

– 11% personal finance

– 11% time management and organization

–  8% family and relationships

–  6% education and training

– 5% home improvement and real estate

– 3% recreation and leisure

No surprise to me.  For sure, my number one resolution, year after year, agreed with Mygoals.com’s number one.  How many times would I resolve to lose weight combined with faithfully going to the gym – and by mid-February having lost my steam?  How many others have done the same thing?  And maybe we have even done that in regard to our ‘alone-time’ with the Lord.  (Hmm-mm-m, that goal wasn’t even on the survey’s list . . . )

When I was preparing my piano students for a recital, I would ask them to rise a little early in the morning and practice, practice, practice their piece for the recital – knowing that whatever goes into a ‘fresh’ brain will make the greatest imprint on the brain for that day – and will be retained more easily.  By recital time, you could almost know who had taken that advice to heart.

When I began working full-time having a considerable travel time to reach my job, I began to notice that my personal growth time with the Lord was beginning to wane.  I was already getting up at 5:30 in the morning to ready my boys to get out the door to school – to ready myself.  At the end of my day, I reasoned that my brain was far too tired to absorb anything from the Lord – from His Word.  But when I noticed that my heart was beginning to cool towards Him – that I was spending more time in ‘work/serving’ rather than ‘worship’, I knew that something had to be done.  Not knowing what to do, I went to God, Himself, on my knees for the answer.  That ‘still, small voice’ spoke to me saying, “I know you love Me, but do you trust me enough to know that you really do need me more than the amount of sleep you have been used to getting.  And I understand that.  You do need your strength to repair from your challenging and rigorous day, but if you will give me the ‘first fruit’ (part) of your day, I promise that I will be your strength.

I began setting my alarm from 5:30a to 4:45a – based solely on faith in what the Lord had shared with my heart.  Long story, short – I never regretted it!  I received more strength, energy, more hope, more guidance, and direction in those 45 minutes than I ever could have in two more hours of sleep!

There are many verses on God’s faithfulness in His Word.  I share these two with you“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He Who promised is faithful.” – Hebrews 10.23      And, “. . . great is Your faithfulness” – Lamentations 3.23     Like my piano students who performed with remarkable improvement having practiced diligently first thing in the morning, I would encourage you (us) to meet our Jesus at our freshest time of day – when our brain is most receptive.  For me that is the first part of my day – for you, it may be another time in your day.  I know that more than likely anyone reading this article spends time talking to the Lord every day (telling Him we love Him, crying out to Him, even begging Him for help), but with God’s help – let’s resolve to fill our hearts and mind from His Word – Him speaking to us a-new and a-fresh every day in 2023.

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” – Lam 3:22-23