There are a multitude of philosophies this time of year. If there is one thing about growing older is this: you’ve tried it all. So my philosophy for the New Year after trying and considering so many is this… Be ready to complete the calling in your heart.
I know some of you say, the heart is deceptively wicked above all things– you can’t listen to your heart. This is true to a certain extent. However, you CAN listen to your heart provided it is guided by God’s Spirit. I believe there is one ultimate truth- a timeless truth which has spanned millennia in both spoken and written form and changed the course of history unlike anything else. As long as your heart is guided by God’s truth you can listen to it.
God has formed each and every one of you and He guides you. That guidance is found in written form. So read it.
When you stop reading God’s Word you get off course. Your focus is off. Bad attitudes creep into your heart, eventually wrong words slip from your tongue and bad behavior is seen in your life. God’s Word keeps you on a straight path.
For those of you who are unaccustomed to God’s Word, what we call “The Bible,” the basic – and even not so basic- truths are there. Do not get caught up in all the accounts in the Hebrew Scriptures, or the Old testament. They need to be read with wisdom, discernment and understanding of history. Begin with the Christian Scriptures, the New Testament, where you will find simple grace and love and mercy and (more) easily understandable guidelines for life.
And then PRAY, and do what God is telling you on a personal level. Listen to what God tells you in your heart. You know God is the one who gives you dreams and aspirations, right? As long as they are good, noble and are not (selfishly) ambitious. If your heart is right then listen to it. Go for it! Complete your aspirations and follow the path set for you.
Last night I was talking to a bright young college sophomore. He is an engineering student at the University of Delaware who is also in the ROTC (Recruit Officers Training Corp) program. He is the son of a friend and also happens to be a friend of my own son. They have grown up together. I asked him how things were going at the university and can you guess his answer? He didn’t give the pat, plastic face answer we often give (because it hides our weakness and struggle) of “fine.” He gave an honest answer. He said, with a smile, that it was hard. I admire that, and from his demeanor and watching him grow up and knowing he has faith, I am confident he is on the path God has for him. God doesn’t always give us easy assignments, usually they are hard. Life is usually hard. But when you are on the path God has for you there is purpose, direction and a deep joy, that we can call contentment. When you are on the right path, even if it is difficult at times, you can do it. When you are doing what your heart tells you to do, knowing that God has directed your heart, then you are ready for the New Year.
So are you ready for the New Year? Get in touch with your Maker. Walk in truth and love and follow the leadings in your heart.
But what if you don’t see the necessity in following God’s will for your life? Then consider the following parable Jesus told as written in the Gospel according to Matthew, verses 1 to 25.
“At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps.
The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep. “At midnight the cry rang out:
‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’ “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’
“ ‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’
“But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.
“Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’ “But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’ “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.
This passage, in particular, speaks to God’s people, those who have devoted their lives to Him. You must be ready and waiting to meet him at any moment doing what He has called you to do. Otherwise you are NOT ready. Lord, have mercy if we are not.
I am so thankful that when I have not been ready to meet Him, He has been patient and guided me. When He speaks to you, be sure to listen. Be ready.
Have a happy New Year 2014 and God’s blessings to you!
Forgive all my typos and bad grammar…I wanted to get this out today, the last day of 2013. Love to all.