Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Line in the Sand

The Line in the Sand
Biblical Priority #5
By Amy Gentry

A new year, a new you and a New Year's resolution.  I cannot tell you how many times I have made the same resolutions: stop doing this, start doing that, grow closer to God, spend more quality time with my husband and children, get in shape, lose weight, lose 20 pounds, lose 60 pounds…  Do you know how many times the New Year's resolutions have actually become a part of a new lifestyle for me?  Zero.  Why???  Maybe because I was making resolutions based on what I wanted fixed.  Maybe there is someone else I should take into consideration when deciding what area of my life needs to be surrendered.

A resolution as defined by Google is “a firm decision to do or not to do something.”  The following  scripture pops into my mind when I hear this definition. “But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve,…  But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." Joshua 24:15 NIV  The thought of “serving the LORD” can seem like a daunting task. However,  when I read this verse, the term ‘serving’ or ‘serve’ seems to be in reference to the authority under whom you are living. Therefore, when I reread this verse I can interpret it as: “if being under God’s leadership seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourself this day who or what will be influencing you,… But as for my family, God is our Ruler“ (interpretation mine).  This verse, to me, seems to be about drawing that line in the sand, that says “From now on, from here on out, I want to live the kind of life that is consistent with God’s desires for me as described in His Word.
But what is important to God?  "If you love me, you will obey what I command.” John 14:15 NIV  It is all about RESOLVE and making that firm decision.

CHALLENGE: Choose for yourself this day to whom you will submit.  Draw a line in the sand and declare whom you will serve and why.  Then write down your commitment in your Bible and date the entry.

Further reflections: Am I going to live by the standards of everyone around me or am I going to live by God’s standard?  In what way am I letting the media determine what is normal in my home?  How am I experiencing pressure to compromise my beliefs?

From the book The Resolution for Women by Priscilla Shirer

“I DO solemnly resolve to embrace my current season of life and will maximize my time in it. I will resist the urge to hurry through or circumvent any portion of my journey but will live with a spirit of contentment.

I WILL champion God's model for womanhood in the face of a post-feminist culture. I will teach it to my daughters and encourage its support by my sons.

I WILL ACCEPT and celebrate my uniqueness and will esteem and encourage the distinctions I admire in others.

I WILL LIVE as a woman answerable to God and faithfully committed to His Word.

I WILL SEEK to devote the best of myself, my time and my talents to the primary roles the Lord has entrusted to me in this phase of my life.

I WILL BE a woman who is quick to listen and slow to speak. I will care about the concerns of others and esteem them more highly than myself.

I WILL FORGIVE those who have wronged me and reconcile with those I have wronged.

I WILL NOT TOLERATE evil influences even in the most justifiable form, in myself or my home, but will embrace and encourage a life of purity.

I WILL PURSUE justice, love mercy and extend compassion toward others.

I WILL BE FAITHFUL to my husband and honor him in my conduct and conversation in order to bring glory to the name of the Lord. I will aspire to be a suitable partner for him to help him reach his God-given potential.

I WILL DEMONSTRATE to my children how to love God with all their hearts, minds, and strength, and will train them to respect authority and live responsibly.

I WILL CULTIVATE a peaceful home where everyone can sense God's presence not only through acts of love and service but also through the pleasant and grateful attitude with which I perform them.

I FULLY RESOLVE to make todays decisions with tomorrows impact in mind. I will consider my current choice in light of those who will come after me.”

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