Sarah Francis Martin is a wife, mother, friend, mentor, author and wanna be artist. Shehas a passion to encourage women to make Jesus famous in every part of life. She is the author of Just RISE UP!: A Call To Make Jesus Famous (Thomas Nelson 2012). Sarah's relevant and conversational style will invigorate readers to live rise up off the couch of complacency live with faith-filled purpose for the renown of Jesus . When Sarah is not typing away at her laptop you can usually find her getting her hands messy with craft paint. Check out more at www.liveitoutblog.com.
May this new year bring new habits…
May those new habits direct us to live a fulfilled life..
May that fulfilled life reflect a heart enthralled…
May that heart live solely enthralled with our King Jesus…
Developing good habits. A great way to start the new year, right? A fresh start. A clean sheet of paper in which our life story unfolds.
What about starting a heart habit of daily time with Jesus?
Many years ago I set out on the habit, the resolution if you will, of reading through the Bible. I loved the idea of checking off a little box next to each passage in a great reading plan. But I never stuck with it. I felt shame and failure.
Then God spoke to my heart telling me it is ok to miss checking that box everyday for He is concerned with the RELATIONSHIP that develops in my daily time with Him.
I realized that my time in God’s word should serve as a connection. A connection to the very King of the Universe who so graciously gives us His Word to chew on, to soak in, to LIVE OUT! It is much more than just checking the box daily.
The next day I picked up my Bible and that reading plan, more focused on connecting with God than the word count I would cover over the next several minutes. The following day I did the same thing. The day after…the same thing…
Soon this habit served as a catalyst to my heart growing more and more enthralled with Jesus. This time in His Holy Word soaked into my heart and lead me to seek Him out daily. This enthralled heart craved time with Him.
But it all started with a habit.
Consistant, intentional, engaged.
Turning A Habit Into A Heart Enthralled. Here are a few things to think about:
~Consistancy. Make time daily but find a time that you are most alert and engaged. For some that might be first thing in the morning. For others that might be during lunch break at work.
~No condemnation. Though it really is to our benefit to spend time with the Lord daily, Your King will not lock you out if you skip time with Him. Know that He will be waiting for you with open arms.
~A heart asking for forgiveness. Start out asking God to forgive you of whatever sin or mistakes you’ve made. This will break down any walls of guilt you might feel and place your heart in a position to where you can learn from that sin/mistakes through what God has to say to you in His word.
~Take a bit a day. I encourage you to sit down with your Bible and read a chapter or two at a time as you read through an entire book. This is the best way to get the full context of what God is saying in that book, what themes and teachings He has for us.
~Enthralled and Engaged. Grab a journal and a pen. Take some time to write out a Bible verse that stands out to you as you read through a chapter or a passage. Write out what that passage is saying to you. Highlight key words. Another great way to stay engaged is to write out your prayers. A pen in hand keeps your mind more focused rather than taking you down rabbit trails.
Please hear me say that Bible reading plans and Bible study books are a VERY GOOD THING. Heck, I even wrote one myself! (Stress Point). All of these resources are a great way to grow you and draw you near to God and His Word.
These are just a few thoughts about how I turned my habit of Bible reading into a relationship with Jesus.
What do you think? How can you turn your habit into a heart enthralled?
Let’s chat…leave a comment!
You can read more from Sarah Martin at LIVE IT OUT! blog.