All of us have unique struggles to deal with. There are complex spiritual, social and psychological reasons for the stupid things we find ourselves doing—or the important responsibilities we are avoiding.
Starting a new year is an opportunity to take stock of our lives with a searching and fearless moral inventory of the dysfunctions/addictions/habits that threaten to enshroud us in spiritual darkness.
God’s Word offers a simple (not simplistic) formula for a spiritual awakening in 2015: “The hour has come for you to wake from sleep. … The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.” (Rom. 13:11-12, ESV).
So instead of indulging in drunkenness of one kind or another (perhaps overdoing even good things), we put aside such behavior and put on God’s armor of light. What does that mean? The next verse explains:
“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires” (verse 14).
So God’s simple formula for spiritual success in 2015 is to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ” and shun all counterfeit pursuits. We distance ourselves from anything that needlessly tempts us, or diverts us from fulfilling God’s purpose. This involves more than getting our sorry souls saved—we welcome Christ’s life-giving Spirit to clothe us like a warm winter jacket.
In practical terms, this gets us into the Bible. Jesus said, “The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life” (John 6:63).
Is the Bible a part of your daily life?
That’s not asked to make us feel guilty—just to make it happen. Many Christians have discovered that a daily reading plan keeps them connected with the Scriptures. Logos Bible Software offers such a feature. You can set it up by clicking on the “home” icon on the top left corner of your screen.
A daily Bible-based devotional reading is also helpful. A favorite of millions is the classic by Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening. It’s included in the library of each SDA base package. Just type that title into the library search box (click the book icon in the upper left of your screen), and the devotional for the day of the year shows up.
Simple habits can make a big difference in our lives this new year. And no resolution is more basic than committing ourselves to a daily connection with Christ through His word.
(Start a reading plan today!)