Forget about making New Years’ resolutions! They last about a month and are usually about diet and exercise after the excesses of the holiday season. Decide. Decide to put God first in your life. There are amazing things that happen when we decide to do something and then carry through. A decision echoes throughout the universe, calls out to God that you are serious. And when we are serious about something, everything in us and around us begins to organize around that decision. And the Holy Spirit joins us in making our intentions, our decisions successful.
Taking last week’s list of five things that will bring you closer to God, to a deeper relationship to your depths, to God: 1)find the still point, 2)examine your own self, 3)live from the deep soul-self, 4)know the Lord and his Word, 5)let your beliefs change as you gain experience of God. You’re already somewhere on this list or you wouldn’t be reading this blog. It is not for the uncommitted. When you look at the list, you may feel that there is more work to do in one area or the other. Which point would you say are you weakest in? Start there. Decide to put this first in your life. If it’s in finding the still point within, then decide to do that. Set aside a time daily –start with 15 to 20 minutes—to be still and listen. Find out how to do that. There are lots of tools on the web.
Is it the self-knowledge and embracing of all that you are that you lack? Then start with a journal, morning pages as Julia Cameron calls it in The Artist’s Way. Write for 15-20 minutes every day all that is on your mind, in your mind. This is like dumping out your thinking onto paper, so that you can see what your mind is really like.
If you lack a commitment to your deep-soul self, find out what you really want to do with your life and in your life. Journal about this every day for 15 to 20 minutes. If it is knowing the Lord, then join a weekly Bible study and do the daily work, again 15 to 20 minutes a day.
After three or four months as you get a hold of one area, listen to the Spirit about where to go next with it. Then see where else the Spirit wants to lead you. Do what you feel called to do.
If you are serious about the first four, then the last one will take care of itself. You will be gaining experience of God that is all yours. All you will need then to do is get your ego out of the way so that you can evolve as the Spirit shows you the way. Once you have experience in one of these areas, then just turn your life over to the Spirit and watch/listen/heed whatever message the Spirit sends you. This is the basic skill in leading the Life of the Spirit. All five points lead to this ability. Hearing and heeding the Spirit within will lead you to fulfilling the purpose of your life, loving God with all of you, and to living fully and deeply to the end of your life.
Just a reminder to your inner perfectionist: this is a LIFELONG journey, it takes a million steps along the way. Once we have really stepped onto this path, we are in the hands of the Lord and God’s Spirit which will decide for us when and how and what and how much and where– the basic decisions. Our conscious minds do not know how to get to loving God with all of ourselves. They cannot stand back and figure out what the next best thing for us is. They are too close to see the depth and breadth of us. So we have to let go of any perfectionistic tendencies and let God lead the way. Amen.