Preparing for a Decade
This month we entered not just a new year, but a new decade. Every year, you hear from me on this platform about how to review your year and look forward to the next year. I would encourage you to look back on the last ten years as well and reflect on all that God has done. For some, thinking past what you had for breakfast yesterday can be difficult. But here are a few questions to help.
- What are three accomplishments you are most proud of?
- What was an obstacle you overcame?
- Who are three people you are thankful for that impacted your life in the last ten years, even if they were only in your life for a small season?
- What was a hard lesson that you learned?
- What is a memory or two that when you think back about it, it makes you laugh?
As we look forward into this next year and into this new decade, before we set goals or make resolutions, I want us to pray. Pray for this year, and for the next ten. Ask God, what work do you want to do in me? He wants to do a new thing in you, but before He can do that, He wants to grow and expand your mind and soul. How will your thinking and life with Christ change this year? I believe how we start something and the foreground that we lay can be the foundation of how we will move through the next ten years. Are you going to come to God first in your decision making and relationships? Before we set goals or vision boards, what are your goals with Jesus? How do you want to grow in your relationship with Him? How will you get more involved in the church and in your community?
Pray that you would be calibrated to the will of God. I had work done recently on my car and I had to have my engine calibrated. Calibration is a set of operations that test your engine and its parts under certain conditions. Whether it’s calibrating the engine or the alignment of your wheels and steering, it is very important to the life of how your car will function. The same goes with our hearts, minds, and our direction. Have you ever driven a car that is pulling left or right instead of straight? A simple trip to a mechanic would fix that. However, how often do we ignore that gas light, or the check engine light and put it off? Seek God’s direction for this next year and decade by first coming to Him in prayer. One of the best ways to seek God’s direction is to fast.
"Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert.” -Isaiah 43:19
Fasting is not a new diet plan, but an intentional time where you replace something and spend that time and energy focusing on God. I am currently fasting from social media and streaming services like Netflix. In just the last few days, I have had so much more time to invest in quiet time, journaling and prayer. Each day, I spend ten-minutes (timed) in prayer. You can choose a book of the Bible and read and journal through it. I recommend Psalms or Proverbs to start.
Once you’ve had time to seek God, here are some great questions as you look forward into the new year specifically:
- Where are three places I want to go?
- What are three new things to try?
- What are two things I am looking forward to this year?
- What are two ways I can help or give back?
- What is one thing I want to get better at?
- May this be the best year and decade yet.
Lord, we pray that we set our minds and hearts first on you. Direct and guide us as we navigate through this year. May my thinking and heart change in order for me to receive the gifts and blessings that you have in store. Equip me for the weathered seasons that are ahead as well. Lord, we thank you for another year of life and we pray for our church leadership as they guide us and serve you. We thank you for your glory and mercy. Amen.