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Thoughts for the New Year

What are your thoughts for the new year filled with?

Whether you look to the New Year with great anticipation or fear what is ahead, I ask you this: “Are you in touch with the Father? Are you listening to God in order to walk with Him?”

He wants you to hear Him. In fact, Deuteronomy 4:29-31 promises, “You will seek the Lord your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul. When you are in distress . . . return to the Lord your God and listen to His voice. For the Lord your God is a compassionate God; He will not fail you.” Perhaps you would like to heed God’s call but are unsure how to do so. There are ways you can be an effective, purposeful listener when it comes to your relationship with the Lord.

First, listen to the Father reflectively. You do so by meditating on His Word and thinking about its principles. Scripture contains God’s thoughts and solutions for everything you will ever encounter. Therefore, read the Bible daily for His instruction.

Second, listen to God prayerfully. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you what He wants you to learn, and rely on His help to apply it to your life. He will remind you of all the Father is teaching you and show you how to proceed.

Third, listen to the Lord submissively. Remember the admonition of Ecclesiastes 5:2, “Do not be hasty in word or impulsive in thought to bring up a matter in the presence of God. For God is in heaven and you are on the earth; therefore let your words be few.” He knows how to lead you in the best manner possible. Be willing to obey whatever He commands.

Fourth, listen to the Father expectantly. God promises to speak to you and He will. It may be through His Word, others, or your circumstances, but you can be certain the Father will guide you.

Fifth, listen to the Lord patiently. There will be times when God teaches you His ways and His will at a slower pace than you expect or desire. Continue seeking His face and obeying regardless of how long it takes, assured that He works on behalf of those who wait for Him.

Do you look forward to the New Year with joy and anticipation? I hope so because I have no doubt that it can be your best year yet if you will carefully seek God reflectively, prayerfully, submissively, expectantly, and patiently. Stay in touch with the Father so that you can walk with Him because this is life at its very best—and He will surely surprise you with all the blessings He’s planned for you.

(Dr Charles Stanley of InTouch Ministries)