Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Fruitful Growth in the Faith

 "But grow in grace and in the knowledge
of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
To him be glory both now and forever. Amen"
(2 Peter 3:18)

As the year comes to an end and a New Year awaits us,
God's Word would have us to examine ourselves
before a Holy and Righteous God.
We are to hold ourselves up to the Word of God.
The end of a year should cause us to reflect
on our lives lived for Christ,
and with the newness of the beginning
of a New Year we should ask ourselves;
Have I done my best for Jesus?
Was there growth in my Spiritual walk with the Lord?
What changes need to be made
that I might grow stronger in the faith.
Those are just a few questions,
you may want to personalize your own.
Peter lists seven qualities by which Christians
can develop their faith,
making them fruitful and effective
in knowing Jesus better.
"And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith,
virtue, and to virtue knowledge;
And to knowledge temperance; 
and to temperance patience;
and to patience godliness;
And to godliness brotherly kindness;
and to brotherly kindness charity.
For if these things be in you, and abound,
they make you that ye shall neither be barren
nor unfruitful in the knowledge
of our Lord Jesus Christ."
(2 Peter 1:5-8)
I praise the Lord for His Word
that instructs me on how to live.
We should not struggle with knowing how to live
a life pleasing unto the Lord,
for everything we need is in the Word of God.
Peter tells us we are to "give all diligence."
I looked up in my Greek/Hebrew study Bible,
and diligence describes strenuously
giving yourself to something,
fully committing to an activity without 
concern for the cost.
It is extraordinary commitment.
Diligence is essential to spiritual growth.
It takes effort on our part to make our faith grow.
Embracing the "diligent" life produces a stable
and consistent character ~
it produces greater endurance through difficulties ~
and stronger resistance to temptation.
With this New Year ahead of us,
we should desire for the old and unhelpful
habits to fall away,
and apply new and profitable habits to our lives
through the working of the Spirit of God,
Who has provided ALL that we need
to know Jesus better.
Dear friends ~ Take time to consider the promises of God.
Write them out ~ memorize them ~ 
ponder them in your heart ~ claim them ~
pray them back to the Lord ~ 
Remember what a magnificent God we serve,
and then act on what you know to be true of His Word.

Our Precious Heavenly father.
We come before Your throne with thankful hearts,
for this past year that you have brought us through.
We look to this coming year with You as our guide,
asking that You would teach us great and mighty things
which we know not.
Help us to be fruitful and grow in our faith,
that we might glorify You.

Grace & Peace
~ Debbie ~
Linking up with:
The Art of Home-making Monday's


Vicky Hunt said...

What a lovely and inspirational post Debbie. I want to thank you for this as I feel you wrote it for me. Each year I choose a word to focus on for the new year and I have had a difficult time choosing my word for 2015. You helped me with that tonight and I am choosing diligence. It is perfect for me in more ways than one. I pray you have a blessed end to 2014. I am so happy to have "met" you are such a sweet blessing!

Hugs, Vicky

Jan Hermann said...

Hi Debbie,

Lovely post. May you be blessed as we go into 2015. I too, have a word for the year - on my Banner {new blog, too}'s NOW. Be present in the "NOW". Learn what I need to now, do what I need to now, be where I need to be now...follow the direction of the Lord now!

Jan ♥

Wanda said...

Your devotional for the beginning of a new year is so true to our need THE WORD!

We have found a new church home since we have been looking for a good Bible preaching church and we have found one. I'm very excited. I will be attending a Women's Bible Study on Tues. morn starting in Jan.

Happy New Year and Blessing from my blog to yours.

Bonnie said...

Debbie, Thank you for the challenge that is taught in scripture.

May your new year be a very special one.

I count you as one of my blessings.

Can't comment on Stephanie's blog for some reason. Will try again tomorrow.

Stephanie said...

What a fabulous post for the beginning of 2015. Thank you for the wisdom and teachings from God's Word - my heart was blessed :)

And your picture is lovely. I am off to bed. I know it's not midnight yet, but I'm tired :)

Happy New Year, sweet mom! Love you!

sarah said...

Exactly what I have in mind! I do hope to take the opportunity in 2015 to walk closer to God. It is sometimes hard to follow Jesus' footsteps but I am trying my very best to do so!

Have a happy new year and May God bless you and your family!

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

This was a beautiful piece to read this first morning of the new year.

I think my word for this year is 'Dependence'. Dependence on Jesus for everything in my life. Let go and let Him care for me in the way He knows is best, all to His honor and glory.

Thank you for your lovely, uplifting and inspiring posts.

May 2015 be a beautiful year for you.


JES said...

Thank you for this gentle encouragement to press on and "grow" in our faith!

Have a happy and healthy and blessed New Year!

Anne Payne said...

Good Morning and Happy New Year, Debbie!
This is truly an encouraging way to start out the new year, by reading such uplifting words. I must remember to visit more often. {{hugs}}

Sylvia said...

Good words to ponder,Debbie! I truly hope to grow and learn this coming year, to have a more spirit filled life! I am thankful for your blog, you give us good insight. Praying you have a blessed New Year!

Sandra said...

Wise words for reflecting on the past year and for looking forward to the new one. We tend to set "resolutions" for the new year that are more geared toward our physical and emotional needs but we also need to remember our spiritual needs.

This is a wonderful post written by someone who has a heart for sharing God's word. Thank you for your Christian life and friendship. May God bless you in 2015, Debbie!

Camille said...

Happy New Year to you, Debbie! I think praying back Scripture to the Lord is a beautiful thing. Thank you for encouraging us to seek Him first. Hugs to you! Camille

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

Thank you, as always, Debbie, for your lovely words of wisdom and encouragement. Happy 2015 to and your family. Hugs and blessings sent to you!

Debby Ray said...

Happy New Year to you, Debbie! These are just wonderful words to start the year out with! It is my greatest desire to be all I can be for my Lord! It is people like you and your sweet Stephanie that I am so thankful for, for the examples and encouragement you provide. Looking forward everything 2015 has to offer!

Marilyn Mathis said...

Such beautiful words this first day of 2015. The beauty of His words to make our new year rich and fruitful. It is a good reminder that we must bear fruit. His Holy Spirit will help us to do that as we do like you say, read, memorize, and be diligent in our walk. Thanks for these sweet reminders. Hugs.

living from glory to glory said...

Hello, I have heard this word a few times in the last month! I appreciate seeing it in this post! We must really apply this to ever act we do in our lives. I want to take it to heart and ponder this word for a bit longer! I think I will need to do a word study on it! Happy New Year!
So happy to have you in my life!
Blessings, Roxy

Bethany Carson said...

Good challenge, verses, and message for the new year. Thank you and may the Lord bless and be with you!

Sola Scriptura said...

Thank you for this encouraging post. What a wonderful challenge. Hugs to you.

Denise said...

Happy New Year Debbie-Thank You for such sweet encouraging words on My post.I pray that I may be more diligent in My spiritual growth this coming Year.In fact the Lord has been speaking to Me about this for a couple of days now, and I do want it so much.OX Denise

Celestina Marie said...

Hi Debbie, what a beautiful post to begin the new year. Your words and heart share the true spirit that God has blessed you with and in return you bless others. Thank you for that, your friendship and always your inspiration.
You make a huge difference in the lives of others in blogland.
Wishing you a wonderful new year filled with many blessings.
Joy to you!!

Celestina Marie said...

Also, meant to say, I love your new blog look and header. Very pretty!!

Delvalina said...

Hello Mrs Debbie,
It's beautiful post here to start the year which is perfectly match to my desire that I want to grow more in Him, knowing His heart more this year.

Thank you for sharing your encouraging words.

I miss you here.

Robyn said...

Good morning, Debbie!
I'm so far behind in my visiting but I'm finally here! lol
Once again I find myself profoundly affected by your wise words, my friend. Visiting you always makes me take the time to slow down, look inside and re-evaluate and for that I am so grateful!
Happy New Year to you, Daffy Friend. You are so precious!

Robyn said...

PS Your new design is so lovely! The colours suit your perfectly :)

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