Originally published Monday, 06 January 2014.
The New Year is here! I wanted to share some daily devotional tips and Bible reading tips to give you a jump start to 2014.
1. BE A FOLLOWER. Disciple simply means follower. It’s not a spiritual term.
QUESTION: You follow people on Twitter and Facebook, so why not be mindful to follow God FIRST?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33, NIV).
2. DISCIPLINE TAKES TIME. Over the years I’ve discovered what works for me. Daily eVerses + Yearly devotionals + One Year Bible + journal/pen = a VERY happy Renee.
QUESTION: What have you found works best for you?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified” (1 Corinthians 9:27, NLT).
3. IF YOU’RE BORED, GOD’S BORED. My friend Monique told me this phrase, and it’s always stuck with me. If you’re in the middle of reading your daily this & daily don’t be afraid to get creative. Try a new Bible translation, time of the day, or devotional book.
QUESTION: In the past what have you found most helpful in getting creative with changing up your devotional life with God?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “Then the Lord said to Moses, “Look, I have specifically chosen Bezalel son of Uri, grandson of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God, giving him great wisdom, ability, and expertise in all kinds of crafts” (Exodus 31:1-3, NLT).
4. DON’T DO IT ALONE. We need community. We need people. We need help. See if one of your friends or family can keep you accountable to spend your time daily with God. If you don’t tell others, they won’t know to ask.
QUESTION: Write down the names of one or two people who help keep you accountable for reading the Word daily. If you can’t think of anyone, write down the name(s) of people who you will ask this week.
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near” (Hebrews 10:24-25, NLT).
5. ASK FOR HELP. Don’t be afraid to lean on your accountability partner for help. When trials come (and they will), God tangibly offers His support in the form of those who are made in His image (your friends and family).
QUESTION: Are you afraid to ask others for help?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening” (Acts 16:25, NLT).
6. KEEP WATCHING! Even when we’re asking others for support and encouragement—ultimately we need to take responsibility to stand watch and keep watching for the Lord to speak to us.
QUESTION: Where do you go to watch for the Lord? Write down at least three places including your room, the outdoors, private gardens, etc.
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “I will climb up to my watchtower and stand at my guardpost. There I will wait to see what the Lord says and how he will answer my complaint” (Habakkuk 2:1-2, NLT).
7. USE YOUR SENSES. I don’t know about you, but I love the taste of food. I like how it fills me up, tastes good, and gives me energy. The Bible is like that too. We taste and see that God is good by spending time daily in the Word, through prayer, and meeting with others.
QUESTION: How do you use your senses to connect with Jesus daily?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “The true bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world. Jesus replied, ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry again. Whoever believes in me will never be thirsty’” (John 6:33, 35, NLT).
8. FIND YOUR PROMISE. It took me eleven months and twenty-six days to find my promise of healing from God. He told me specifically “In kindness He called me to share in His eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after I have suffered a little while, He will restore, support, and strengthen me, and He will place me on a firm foundation” (1 Peter 5:10, NLT-emphasis mine).
QUESTION: What kind of promise from the Lord are you desperately searching for or have you already found one?
YOUR BIBLICAL EXAMPLE HERE ________.
9. MEMORIZE SCRIPTURE. If you can quote your favorite movie, you can memorize Scripture. Just sayin’.
QUESTION: When was the last time you memorized a favorite passage of Scripture?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do” (Joshua 1:8, NLT).
10. LIVING FOR ETERNITY. God has given us every spiritual gift we need for living a godly life (2 Peter 1:3, NLT). Don’t let Judgment day catch you by surprise. Live each day with for eternity. Add goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, affection, and love to your faith daily.
QUESTION: What attribute do you find most difficult and/or easy to live out loud?
BIBLICAL EXAMPLE: “Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13, NLT).
*Previously published on DevotionalDiva.com.