Archive for the ‘Christ-like’ Category

Happy New Year!! A time that we make resolutions to be healthier, more committed to relationships, more successful at our job. The list just goes on and on. But there is no greater resolution than to seek God and to allow Him to transform you, and there’s no better time than today to start.

Start by reading the Bible everyday. If you don’t have a Bible, get a Bible app and set it for daily reminders. Or set your alarm a little earlier each morning. Find a Bible study partner or group to hold you accountable and share about your transformation and what you’re learning. What better way to start your day than with scripture! According to an article in Psychology Today, it takes an average of 66 days for a new activity to become a habit. So we need all the reminders we can get!

The SOAP method is my personal favorite for Bible study. It helps me avoid the Reading Just to be Reading issue. To be honest, there are times I’ve read my Bible but then later in the day or week I had no idea what I had read. I learned nothing, felt no connection to God, and definitely was not seeking Him or transformed in any way. I think if you try this method, you’ll find it helps!

S is for SCRIPTURE – Pray over the Bible reading, then read it slowly allowing God to lead you to specific verses. Write down scriptures that capture your attention and focus your attention on that.

O is for OBSERVE – Record in your journal any thoughts or questions you have regarding the scripture.

A is for APPLY – Write down what God is saying to you. What is God’s personal message, instruction, encouragement, or correction? Take time to listen, and allow Him to get personal.

P is for PRAY – Write a personal prayer about what God has shown you. This will help you to stay focused. Again, be sure to listen. Prayer is a two way conversation. God may reveal more to you during this time if you give Him the chance.

I like to keep a journal just for my SOAP Bible Studies. I use two pages, side by side. Below is an example from my journal. No judgement please…I never expected to share haha!

Often I enjoy going back to read the insight from past studies. It amazes me the application that I’ve gleaned through this type of personal Bible study. Something I plan to start is including the date. Make it pretty if you like. Make it personal. Make it your New Year’s Resolution and allow God to transform you!

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She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future. Proverbs 31:25

A kind hearted woman gains honor. Proverbs 11:16

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. Proverbs 31:26

Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14

God is with her, she will not fall. Psalm 46:5

Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her. Luke 1:45

The Lord is my strength and my shield. Psalm 28:7

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged for the Lord your God is with you where you go. Joshua 1:9

Under His wings you will find refuge. Psalm 9:1

Don’t worry about anything, instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Philippians 4:6-8

By the grace of God, I am what I am. 1 Corinthians 15:10

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14

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And whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the Lord Jesus, all the while giving thanks through him to God the Father.  Colossians 3:17

Whether we realize it or not, our children watch very closely our actions.  I always knew when things got quiet that my children were up to something, which is a skill that most mothers learn the hard way.  One particular day, I discovered my three-year old daughter playing in my makeup.  It seems that without my realizing it, she had been observing the proper method of applying mascara.  The evidence was all over her beautiful little face.  Although not applied correctly, she had attempted what she saw Mommy do every morning.  She had watched me close enough that she knew exactly where mascara belonged.  She had managed to apply it in the general area of her eyes, but as you can imagine, she looked like a little raccoon caught in the headlights.  I suddenly realized that my children are very aware of my actions, and I must be careful of the things I do and say.

When we accept Jesus, we become His representative.  A representative shares the heart of whom they represent rather than their own selfish desires.  We must fill our thoughts and actions with Christ’s attitude.  Just as our children watch what we do, our non-Christian friends are observing how we react in everyday situations.  We must exhibit Christ-like attitudes in all that we do if we hope to lead others to Christ.  Others are constantly watching us to see what, if anything is different about our lives.  None of us is perfect, but we must always guard our thoughts and actions against evil.  Most of my life I have heard the phrase, “you may be the only Jesus some will ever see”.  If we display the same negative qualities of non-Christians, we are impairing our witness for Christ.

It is possible, however, to be so mindful of what we do that we do it more for man than God.  We should never do something just because we know others are watching.  This brings recognition only to ourselves.  The most effective way to be a representative of the Lord is to be mindful of the fact that others are watching, while focusing on striving to do what God wants as we try to glorify only Him.

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