It took me some time to consider how I would spend my morning time with God. I was considering different reading places and options. I was considering different devotionals and focus. But as of Tuesday after talking with a friend from Israel, I have decided to use JPS to read through the Old Testament which is in a different order from the Old Testament I have in my Bible as it goes in the order of the Tanakh. I have read through the Bible in many orders over the years including using the Chronological Bible which gave me an interesting twist on things. I have read through the Bible in other orders based on devotionals that would direct me through the Bible in the year. I have read through the Bible in other orders where you read part of the Old Testament or New Testament for the day along with a Proverb and a Psalm. I have read through the Bible with various translations too like King James, New King James, New Living Translation, New International Version, Message, Amplified, Common English Bible, Contemporary English Version, using tools like physical Bibles, biblegateway.com, bible.com, biblestudytools.com, biblehub.com, studylight.org and more. And so this year with the gift I received for Christmas of the One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar that I will read the daily devotional and then after researching reading models for reading the Tanakh that I will read 15-30mins to make my way through that before I turn the page and find a New Testament reading plan for the remainder of the year. The amount I am able to make it through in the Tanakh may vary in cases where I look to compare what it says using online version from Sepharia.org with my go to sources bible.com and biblehub.com.
So 2021 will remain the same with my day starting in God’s Word, exercising, and posting what God is speaking to me to this blog. I almost put my blog but I am just a steward of this blog as God called me to blog back in 2005 and to blog publicly and when I asked what to write about He directed me to write about my morning readings. I remember back in 2005 starting my blog using Windows Live Spaces and the people around the world that connected me to. I remember how in 2010 Windows Live was getting out of the blog business and migrated me to WordPress.com where I have been posting ever since. So I will press forward towards what God is calling me to do in order that I may be a good steward of my time and one day hear from my Lord and Savior, “well done my good and faithful servant“.
The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar and Dr. Ike Reighard for January 1st
Memory Verse of the Day: Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV
‘Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.’
Points from the devotional:
- Remain humble – do not become cocky. Do not allow pride to fill you and cause you to get tripped up. Remember how pride goes before the fall.
- As long as we are still here, we are a work in progress. God’s not done with us yet!
- Take hold of the One Thing just like Paul did and how everything we do is to be towards that One Thing, the singular objective made up of two parts: “not dwelling in the past” but “reaching ahead to achieve the vision of the future”.
- Reflecting on 2020, the past can hold us back or distract us (as my 2020 in the rearview theme spoke to)
- The past can bog us down in one of two ways and neither are good for us. Ashamed of failures causing every decision we are considering in the present through the prism of grief and fear. Clouded by the glory days and trying to relive those moments rather than use it as a foundation or spring board for the present and future.
- As my posts about 2020 pointed out, living in the rearview mirror will cause us to miss out on the life we are supposed to be living now. The present where we need to be focusing. Whether positive or negative pasts, getting stuck there will rob you of your the gift of life, the present.
- Today’s memory verse begins with “forgetting those things which are behind” – and so as Paul tells us we need to forget the past and move forward.
- Today’s memory verse then points us in the way we should go “reaching forward to those things which are ahead” in order for us to accomplish God’s vision for our lives.
- Just like how in 2020 I had the opportunity to read the book Chase the Lion which called me to dream big, to set God sized goals, that if my dreams big enough to require God’s help they are too small.
- We need to take hold of a God sized cause that will make a positive impact on the lives of people and expand the kingdom of God.
- As I consider and reflect on this I consider my home and my role as husband, father, neighbor, and friend
- As I consider and reflect on this I consider my workplace and my role as employee, mentor, and manager
- As I consider and reflect on this I consider my service work and my role as director for T.R.A.C. and director, media, and online mediator for church services
- In each of these my goal is to make a positive impact on the lives of people and expand the kingdom of God
- So as I begin 2021 my focus is on Paul’s One Thing – “forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.“
Discussion Topics from today’s devotional:
What are some past failures or successes you need to leave behind?
- Beta Program
- Central Services
Is there a God-sized cause that has gripped your heart? Explain your answer.
- H.A.F.K./T.R.A.C. – to lead people in serving kids and teens in the foster care system along with their families
- Entrepreneurs who are trying to make it work with a transition to online – providing tools and services on a global scale that will help them with their purpose and calling.
Quotes from today’s devotional:
Today’s reading from Tanakh:
Happy New Year! Were are you at today? Are you looking for guidance? Are you wondering where to turn? Are you at the end of your rope and needing help? Are you ready for some help? Are you ready to turn to God and ask? seek? knock? Let’s pray together.
Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I confess my complete helplessness to forgive my own sin or to work my way to heaven. At this moment I trust Christ alone as the One who bore my sin when He died on the cross. I believe that He did all that will ever be necessary for me to stand in your holy presence. I thank you that Christ was raised from the dead as a guarantee of my own resurrection. As best as I can, I now transfer my trust to Him. I am grateful that He has promised to receive me despite my many sins and failures. Father, I take you at your word. I thank you that I can face death now that you are my Savior. Thank you for the assurance that you will walk with me through the deep valley. Thank you for hearing this prayer. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.—The Sinner’s Prayer
Did you pray this with me? Would you like to connect and discuss it with me? Would you like to make time to start your walk with Jesus? Do you have questions? Please let me know through the comment section below, through email, or even through text messages.