So far I’ve offered three ideas for ways to invest more spiritually in the coming year. Here they are in bullet-point form:
- Attend church more consistently
- Go beyond attendance and get involved in church activity
- Commit to giving financially to support the ministry of the church.
Here are two more ideas to consider:
Maybe this is the year you step forward and are baptized.
It’s funny, but baptism can be an intimidating thing.
First off you get wet. Which seems fine at a pool or at the beach. But maybe a bit odd at church.
Second, baptism happens in front of a lot of people. Which can be intimidating.
But, baptism is something the Bible calls us to do!
It is the symbolic declaration of the work that Jesus has done in our lives.
And it is an incredible blessing to the church family.
My encouragement: Ask God to remove your fears and fill you with a determination to honor Him through baptism.
Note: When it comes to baptism, I’ve never heard anyone say, “I wish I hadn’t done that!”
What is much more typical is to hear, “Why did I wait so long.”
Here’s the second thought for a New Year’s resolution:
Maybe this is the year you commit to knowing your Bible better, and in turn, seek to apply it to your life.
The more you know your way around your Bible, the better equipped you will be to help yourself as well as others.
For many of us, the idea of studying and meditating on the Bible seems huge…it’s such a big Book.
But the advice for spending time in the Bible is the same advice for how you handle a huge meal: You take it one bite at a time.
Sometimes people try to read through the Bible quickly, with the goal being quantity over quality.
But I believe the best way to spend time in the word is not just to read but to reflect.
Another great way is to join others in the effort. Get in a group that systematically works their way through the Scriptures!
When I study a passage of the Bible, I always have three questions in mind to process:
- What does it say?
- What does it mean?
- What am I supposed to do?
These three questions help keep the Bible from becoming stale or distant or rote.
About the Bible, Charles Spurgeon said this:
If you wish to know God you must know his word; if you wish to perceive his power you must see how he works by his word; if you wish to know his purpose before it is actually brought to pass you can only discover it by his word.