Staring the New Year
I know many people start the new year in setting time aside to seek the Lord, often combined with a Daniel fast. I am doing the Daniel fast for at least 21 days here at the first of 2009. But I feel so strongly about something else that I started last year. It is very hard, because I am trying it again this year, and I find it a challenge. But it is SO rewarding! In the next 36.5 days I am not allowed to petition God for anything. This is a tithe (10%) of my year to Him in simply being in relationship with Him. I am putting Him FIRST, above all, above what I want Him to do for me. Also, in putting Him first, I am tuning out the media like TV, radio, CDs, movies, video games, magazines, on line articles and books. I am going to read the Bible, that's it. (OK, I said it wasn't easy, and I was already checking out some info on line related to something God shared with me tongiht). Anyway, I know that this is media, but I feel so strongly about sharing this with others. You see, the purpose of this website is to encourage people to love the Lord their God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength. Since we are to have no other gods before Him, I am clearing out the beginning of the year for HIM and HIM alone. Prayer is not about what He can do for us, it is about HIM. I am encouraging people to quit focusing on what they want Him to do for them and start focusing on HIM. Again, never said it was easy...and some will say "How can I quit praying on this (certain issue)?" They feel their prayer will not be answered if they take a 36.5 day break from praying on it. But is our faith in how often we repeat prayers or in God's ability to answer them? By focusing on Him, I guarantee His power and greatness will be more impressed than ever on you, and you will know and believe He will answer.
So, to those who would like to join, what can we do in the next 36.5 days (if your starting late, just go an extra 2 1/2 days)? Read the Bible, spend quiet time in His Presence, listen for His voice, praise, worhsip and thank Him, do things with family that don't involve the media, love on Him, revel in His goodness, meditate on God and His Word, relax in regards to those "urgent" prayer requests, and write down anything He tells you or anything He gives you. I find it very rewarding and helpful to keep a journal of significant things that happen during this time and of things He speaks to me and insights He gives me. (I keep mine in a computer document.)
Also, as a writer, if He gives me things to write, as in stories, GREAT! We fast off the media to receive things we may one day share through the media. So I am open to that. We are fasting off what other people are saying (the media) to receive from God what He is saying directly to us through His Word and through The Still Small Voice. So, record those things. Some day, you may be led to share them in a way that blesses others through a form of media.
I need to get back to my own fast of the first 36.5 days to God, so I am closing now. I was having a hard time expressing it. But really and truly, will you set aside the first of your year to honor Him with your time? Will you give Him your undivided attention, not distracted by things you are asking for in prayer and not distracted by the many voices of the media?