Monday, January 6, 2020

A New Year - Stop and Consider

“Now, the Lord of Armies says this: “Think carefully about your ways.” Haggai 1:5

“Even those most faithful to God occasionally need to pause and think about the direction of their lives.” – Don Whitney[1]

For me, January involves getting back to basic disciplines of life.  Because tax season looms, it requires working on family finances.  Typically, January involves organizing - going through files, books, computers and deciding what needs to be thrown out, saved, or used.  Often that includes discovering forgotten treasures - a note from a loved one, a picture from a child, an idea I scribbled on a piece of paper and filed.  It involves digging out from the Christmas clutter and making way for new things for a fresh year.

And January offers a good time to re-evaluate myself spiritually.  I try to dig again into a healthy spiritual disciplines routine.  I make concrete goals in areas like prayer, Bible reading, or Scripture memorization.  How might I intentionally try to influence someone for Christ this year? How can I assist the poor or someone in a difficult situation? 

I ask, "What are some good books I am going to read the next few months to help me grow spiritually and intellectually?"  One man said that there are only 2 things that will make you different 5 years from now than you are today - the people you meet and the books you read.  So, choosing good books to help our spiritual growth is essential.

The prophet Haggai exhorted God’s people to think carefully about their ways.  After returning to the homeland, they neglected to build God’s Temple and seek first His reign in their lives.  Instead, they focused on their own houses and benefits.  God challenges them to take spiritual inventory.  With the prophet’s words, they can make adjustments where they have slipped. 

After a busy holiday season, it is easy for me to become self-absorbed.  God’s Word reminds me to carefully think about my own life and how I want it to reflect the Lord in the coming year.

To Consider:

  • Read: Haggai 1:1-12
  • What area(s) of your life could stand for some evaluation this month?
  • Write down one or two practical steps or goals to achieve in each area.
  • Ask the Lord for wisdom and discernment to know how to best order your life for a new year.

Picture used by permission from Pixabay

[1] Donald Whitney, 10 Questions to Ask at the Start of a New Year,

No comments:

Post a Comment