Goals with Grace

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Goals with Grace. Do you make goals? Have trouble keeping them? Wonder why even bother? I’m going to share some goals with you for the New Year (I shared all of my goals in this post) as well as some resources that I have loved and have been very helpful for me.

As we enter this season of goal setting, let us go into the process with open hands, surrendered to the will of God as we attempt to steward our best for His glory.

Here is a wonderful outline for setting goals that I read in the new Illustrated Faith Bible Journaling devotional kit this month!

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When you are beginning to set your goals, start with prayer. Ask God for His presence and surrender Your will to His.

“Many plans are in a man’s heart, but the Lord’s decree will prevail.” Proverbs 19:21

Open hands and an open heart…we must keep this humble attitude as we make our plans and goals. I want to do the best I can with what God has given me…yet I also acknowledge that God is sovereign and every plan I try to make is still subject to His loving care.

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The new devotional kit from Illustrated Faith and Dayspring is called Goals with Grace. Such a perfect theme for this time of year!

As I have been taking time to pray, plan (in all areas of life!) and set goals for myself, I have referred back to this outline above that is described in the devotion from this month’s kit. Ask God for His presence. Assess the current situation and even last year – what worked, what didn’t work, how can you better steward the life God has given you? Ask God for HIS vision for your life.  And then surrender it all back to Him.

My word and theme for this year is BEHOLD. I want to BEHOLD God more and behold my circumstances and myself less. The more time I spend in God’s Word, the more I behold Him, the more I learn of Him, the more I know Him. The more I know Him, the more I trust Him, the more I trust Him, the better I am prepared to surrender my own plans and goals and willingly submit to HI=is loving care.

{I liked this page from the devotional so much I tore it out and taped it into my Bible!}

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More New Year & Goals Inspiration

Unboxing Video

Goals with Grace Devotional Kit

Walk through this 14-day devotional journey greatly anticipating God to meet you right where you are as you set daily, monthly, and yearly goals, and as devotional writer, Bailey Jean, graciously leads all to get eyes and hearts focused on the ultimate goal, Jesus Christ.  “The rest of our goals don’t matter if we aren’t set on THE goal.  May our goals point to Him.  May our goal be MORE of Him.”  —Bailey Jean
Product Details:

  • 1 plastic pouch
  • 1 devotional booklet
  • 1 clear stamp collection
  • 1 roll of washi tape
  • 1 sheet of cut-out paper pieces
  • 2 cardstock sticker sheets
  • 3 tip-ins
  • 1 magnet
  • 1 thank you card from Shanna

Do you have any tips for setting goals? Keeping goals? Follow through? I would love to hear your tips!

10 Discipleship Questions to Ask in the New Year

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As we look ahead to 2017 with hopes, dreams, prayers and visions, these are some wonderful questions to think and pray through!

You can see the 10 goals I’m working toward in this post.

More Reflections & Inspiration for the New Year

**I also encourage you to listen to this podcast by Sally Clarkson about guarding and preparing our hearts as we pray about the New Year and the goals we hope to set!

**This prayer from Desiring God is wonderful. I think I’m going to print it out and read it with my family.

**Scripture Memory plan with Beth Moore

**If you’re looking for a BIBLE READING PLAN in 2017, I listed several of my favorite ideas here!

10 Questions to Consider

Print this PDF and pray through these questions as you make plans and goals for 2017!

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10 Goals I’m Working Toward in 2017

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I’m a terrible goal setter. I will just say that right off the bat. But, I don’t feel like that excludes me from TRYING AGAIN. PRESSING ON. Each of us is a work in progress, yes? So if I believe that, I must wake up and try again!

I’ve been using Power Sheets by Lara Casey to help me be more intentional and GRACE FILLED when it comes to setting goals for myself. Her blog posts and resources on this topic are so full of GRACE and also so good for us moms who have a million things on our plates! (See her current goal setting series, her book Make Things Happen and her resource Power Sheets for creating goals.) 

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10 Goals I’m Setting in the New Year

  1. More consistent Scripture memory (I’m starting with Colossians 3, read this post for more info)
  2. Cooking more meals, eating dinner more as a family (this will help with my goal of eating healthier AND eating out less!)
  3. Think & pray before committing to ANYTHING new
  4. Regular exercise (I’m already signed up for Crystal Paine’s 15 Days to a Healthier You online course that costs $15 and has daily facebook live videos! Join me!)
  5. Smoothie or salad daily!
  6. 1-on-1 time with each child each month
  7. Implement weekly newsletter for my email subscribers
  8. Pray more. Worry less.
  9. Learn to behold God in all things. (See my word of the year for more on BEHOLDING my God!)
  10. Phone-free homeschool mornings (goal is from 9am-Noon)
  11. Bonus goal! (LOL) Share about essential oils and how beneficial they are by having more classes or get togethers with those who want to live healthier lives in 2017.

A few days ago I had a few hours to myself and was able to sneak away to a coffee shop and just pray and dream. I used to do this more often and I miss it so much! (That should be another goal for the new year!)

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Accountability

So what are your favorite ways to remain accountable when you set goals? Follow through is the hardest part! I would love to hear your ideas! I’m wondering/hoping if I could blog monthly about these goals if that would help ME to keep at it!

What goals are you setting in the new year? Let’s call them GRACE GOALS. And let’s be courageous enough to show ourselves GRACE as we work toward forming new habits to help us grow more healthy both physically and spiritually!

Let’s Be Women of the Word Together

 

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Do you want to be a woman of the Word? Me, too.

Join me beginning January as we begin our next book study with the book Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin. 

Together we are going to grapple with questions like…

Why do we study the Bible?

How do we study the Bible?

What are practical tips for studying God’s Word?

How can we make our Bible study about God and not about ourselves?

In her book Women of the Word, Jen tells us that when we read and study the Bible looking to learn more about ourselves, we are doing it for the wrong reasons. The Bible is a book about God. We learn about Him, we look for Him, and we find Him.

This isn’t to say we don’t learn more about ourselves in the process, but HOW we go about our study will help us learn more about God, which is the ultimate goal.

Let’s study the One we want to become more like…

It’s been said that we become what we behold. Let us behold our God through the pages of His Word! 

 

Write the Word with us!

In the book Women of the Word she very strongly encourages us not to take verses out of context and to look at the Scriptures as a whole. I completely agree with this. However, before we look at studying a book of the Bible in depth, I would like for us to spend a few weeks looking at many passages about God’s Word itself. I want our hearts to be reminded of the importance and treasure of His Word.

Let’s see what God’s Word has to say about God’s Word. These are all verses that will stir our hearts to know His Word more and more!

I will be starting this Write the Word schedule on January 1st, 2017. Join me on Instagram if you’d like to see nearly daily morning nuggets of truth from these passages. 

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Join our Closed Facebook Group

We will be discussing this book weekly in our closed facebook group! We would love to have you.

Click here to join our group. I will look to make sure your facebook account is a real person. And then we will approve your membership. Look for a notification for His Mercy is New Community of Encouragement.

Reading Schedule

January 6th – Introductions in the closed group – come by and introduce yourself!

January 9th – discuss Introduction, Chapters 1 & 2

January 16 – Chapter 3

January 23 – Chapter 4

January 30 – Chapter 5

February 6 – Chapter 6

February 13 – Chapter 7

February 20 – Chapters 8 & 9, Conclusion

Free Study Guide

Jen Wilkin & her team at Crossway have put together a FREE study guide for this book that you can find here! I will be using portions of this in our closed group as well!

Passage to Memorize Together

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After Women of the Word

After we finish this study of the book Women of the Word, it is my hope and prayer that you will continue with us as we take a look at 1 book of the Bible and study it more indepth using the tools we’ve learned from this book!

Psalm 129

Psalm 129

As I’ve been reading through the Psalms in the 150 Days in the Psalms plan, I had hoped to share more of my simple thoughts and truths as I’ve read through the Psalms. Alas, I’ve only gotten to blog about a few of the Psalms!

(You can find nearly every morning’s Psalm and prayer on Instagram if you want to search for the hashtag #150DaysInThePsalms) 

Psalm 129

“They have greatly oppressed me from my youth,”
    let Israel say;
“they have greatly oppressed me from my youth,
    but they have not gained the victory over me.
Plowmen have plowed my back
    and made their furrows long.
But the Lord is righteous;
    he has cut me free from the cords of the wicked.”

May all who hate Zion
    be turned back in shame.
May they be like grass on the roof,
    which withers before it can grow;
a reaper cannot fill his hands with it,
    nor one who gathers fill his arms.
May those who pass by not say to them,
    “The blessing of the Lord be on you;
    we bless you in the name of the Lord.”

Crushed But Not Destroyed

Verse 2 from Psalm 129 says that we may have been greatly afflicted, but the enemy has not prevailed! I love this reminder of the victory we have in Christ!

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-9

This passage in 2 Corinthians goes on to say, “therefore we do not lose heart…” so let us remember that while we may be crushed, we are not destroyed. The enemy will not prevail. We have victory in Jesus. We know our eternity is secure because of His blood. We can live as victorious and grateful people.

We are His.  

More Psalms

More Bible Journaling Kits on Sale

I know I’ve shared quite a few sales with y’all lately! When I see things that I think you will love, I can’t help but share. And, usually, it’s a deal I’ve taken advantage of myself. I love to share a good deal!! And I love Bible journaling!! <3

If you’d like to see more pictures from my journaling Bible, please head over to this page! 

Tis the Season Kit is 2 for $40

The Christmas kit called Tis the Season is on sale 2 for $40! Buy 1 for yourself and 1 for a friend! These are perfect gifts for nieces, teen daughters, girlfriends or for yourself!

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$15 Kits

They still also have a page of the DEVOTIONAL KITS for $15!

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B1G1F

They have selected some Illustrated Faith items that you can buy 1 and get 1 FREE this week!

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One Year Praying Through The Bible For Your Kids

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I was so very excited to see this brand new resource! Y’all know how much I love praying God’s Word!

This brand new book called The One Year Praying Through the Bible for Your Kids is a Bible reading plan that takes you through the entire Bible in 365 days. Along with the Scripture you are to read for that day, there is a page with a short devotional based on one of the passages for the day, and then a prayer that goes along with that devotion and Scripture.

 

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Praying through the Scriptures has changed my prayer life. To pray God’s Word, we must be IN God’s Word. We must be reading and meditating and asking God to show us more of Himself. And as we read, we can offer back His very words as prayers. Asking Him to do in us what we are reading about. Asking God to work in our children’s hearts the passages that we are reading. Asking Him to make us all more like Jesus.

The devotions in this book are written by Nancy Guthrie and I really like them. The devotions are written for the parents to read and have lots of parenting wisdom shared throughout. I love how she applies the Scriptures to her devotions and to the prayers. It’s my favorite way to pray.

You can read samples of the devotions on Amazon’s page, but I also thought I would list a few samples here for you to glance at. I really like to see the INSIDE of the books I’m reading, especially if it’s a devotional with a Scripture reading plan all in one!

If you’d like a new devotional and Bible reading & prayer plan for the New Year, I can highly recommend this one to you

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More Resources for Praying the Scriptures

FREE verses to pray for each month of the year

31 Verses to Pray When Doing Battle With Our Fears

40 Days of Waiting on God Alone

Praying the Scriptures through Advent

 

 

We Welcome the Prince of Peace

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There has never been a time in my life when this world seemed to need Advent more than now. We need advent, the arrival, the birth of the Prince of Peace.

The Advent season is upon us. The first day of the traditional Advent season is Sunday, November 27th.

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the greatness of his government and peace
there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne
and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it
with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this. 

Isaiah 9:6-7

With the birth of Jesus we have the birth of grace. Through the gift of His Son, God shows us true love. We learn what true peace is because of our Prince of Peace. We have the hope of heaven because of Advent.

Now, more than ever, as believers we need to be fervent in prayer and the study of God’s Word. Let us fix our eyes on JESUS this Advent season. Let us remember WHY He came to earth.

One of my favorite passages in the Bible about Jesus is from Isaiah 61.

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.

Isaiah 61:1-3

This passage is a prophecy written about Jesus before He was ever born. We learn from this passage that through Jesus, every single one of our needs will be met. In Christ. He brings good news for the poor, He binds up the brokenhearted, He proclaims freedom for the captives, He releases from darkness the prisoners, He comforts all who mourn, He gives beauty for ashes, He gives the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of despair.

Every single need you are facing today…can be met in Jesus. He doesn’t always meet our needs in the way that our flesh or this world may seek to meet those needs. But He meets them with Himself. He gives us more and more of Him.

Lord Jesus, my Prince of Peace…I welcome You into my world, my home, my heart this Advent season.

Emmanuel: God with us. God with me. God with you. 

I talked a little bit about this passage the other day on Facebook Live…

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Tis the Season Journaling Kit 30% off

This beautiful Christmas Kit from Dayspring is 30% off for Black Friday. Use the code FRIDAY16

Prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus as Melody invites you to dive deeper into some really meaningful words during this 25-day Advent devotional.  Focusing on four special words—Hope…Love…Joy…Peace, Melody gives 25 daily prompts (along with Scripture), in hopes that you will connect with these four words, the prompts, and other details within the verse.  “May each day of this journey help build our collective excitement about the coming of Christmas day and the celebration of the Messiah!”  —Melody

Devotional message:
Tis the Season

Sample copy:
1.  Future.  (Jeremiah 29:11)
2.  Glory.  (Isaiah 60:2)
3.  Freedom.  (Isaiah 61:1-3)
Plus 22 more!

Product Details:

  • 1 devotional booklet (25 prompts with Scripture)
  • 1 stamp pad
  • 1 clear stamp collection with 1 sheet of cut-outs enclosed
  • 1 roll of washi tape
  • 1 package of 3 Scripture sharables
  • 1 sticker
  • 1 bow clip

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First 500 Receive Free Christmas Stamp Set!

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{The new Christmas kit!!}

If you’ve been wanting to try a new Illustrated Faith Bible Journaling Monthly KIT, this is the month to try it!!

The first 500 who purchase the December Tis The Season kit will receive a FREE Christmas stamp set! These kits are so well done. I have shared about many of them and you can find those posts here!

Free Christmas Stamp Set

If you are one of the first 500 to order the NEW KIT for DECEMBER you will receive a FREE set of Christmas stamps! These stamps will be added to your cart automatically. While supplies last. Aren’t these adorable??

Go here to purchase the Tis the Season Devotional Kit from Dayspring! 

I will be back in a few weeks to show you a few pages that I’ve created using the Tis the Season kit! Can’t wait to dig in to ADVENT Bible Journaling!!

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Bible Journaling

To see all of the kits and posts I’ve done on Bible Journaling, head over to this page!

 

Are You Stuck in Your Prayer Life?

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{Please help me welcome Kim to the blog!}

Did you ever feel stuck in you prayer life? I did. I remember sitting in the prayer room (yea, we are the directors of a 24/7 prayer room) praying, and God asked me “when was the last time you prayed?” I was shocked!  “God I am sitting here in the prayer room praying!” Ever so gently He asked or maybe even told me “what are you praying?”  So if you can imagine me sitting there, being asked by God what I was praying, thinking well, you’re God didn’t you just hear me?

This was a defining moment in my life. It has changed me forever, and God has me in ‘The School of Prayer’ ever learning.

I began to remind God what I was praying for, that I was in the prayer room, praying for all the things I wanted, wanted Him to take care of and do, the bless this and that and them prayer, and a whole 10 minutes of my 2 hour set had passed. What are you praying? I could not shake the question and since I could not seem to answer, He asked another question. “What does my Word say?”

It was this moment that I began to cry. Not because I knew that God was right, but I didn’t or couldn’t answer. Why? My bible remained shut, but my prayer list lay open.  I lay down my list, my pen and my pride, opened my bible to Matthew (because aren’t you to start in the beginning of the New Testament?)  Anyway – I was drawn to the Sermon on the Mount and the Lord’s Prayer. So I prayed that. But still had that nagging question over me “What does my Word say”, so I kept going until I came to verse 33. Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you.

My mind began to explode with questions and thoughts. Seek first. My first prayer at any moment is to seek God first and these things are added. How easily we say “Dear God” and think that is the seeking, and then we begin to pray for the things. I hear that commercial in my head “that’s not how this works, that’s not how any of this works”  How many times have we prayed and not even acknowledged God?

I am not sure how much time Candace has for me here so let me get to what I learned. Our prayer life is to seek God, His Kingdom, acknowledge His righteousness, (Our Father in Heaven, Holy be your name), then “these things” that are added, aren’t new clothes, cars or husbands. They are the things above that verse, the life of the Kingdom. He already knows what we need physically, but we are very slow to realize what we need spiritually is priority.  My job isn’t to tell God what is needed, or send him my pinterest items so he knows what to get me. My prayer life is to look like that of Jesus, who was about His Father’s business, all the time. My prayer life is to be this constant communion in thought and words to my Father. Can you imagine if with your earthly dad or mom, you only ever talked to them when you wanted new shoes?

I know, right? We think we have this right to demand things of God without even seeking God, knowing him, what is His desire? Or think of Jesus. If  he is seated at the right hand of the Father interceding, it would be wise to know what he is praying and join him. (John 17 is what he is praying)

So that day in the prayer room, God began to take me on this amazing journey of living a life that is spent in prayer. Not for things, but seeking God.

My passion is to help people learn to love and pray the Word, and begin to seek God first.  God showed me that what I read in the bible is prayer.  So I wrote a little bible reading journal to help you discover and journey like I did. Document your spiritual journey as you learn about our Father God, His Son and The Holy Spirit.

Reading the Bible is like reading a relationship in prayer with our Father. But let’s face it we all struggle to find time to read or keep up with journaling and praying. Where do we start? How do we enter into a praying life with the Word? So my resource combines study and reading of the word with personal journal reflections as prayer, using the acrostic P.R.A.Y.  It’s called One Day Legacy, because each day we are creating a legacy for ourselves and for others.

My prayer is “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom…”(Colossians 3:16)

One Day Legacy can be purchased on Amazon

More Resources for Praying God’s Word

Learn more about what it means to pray God’s Word

Free monthly calendars for praying God’s Word

14494603_1227703307250024_2787897893365176489_nKim and her husband, Brian live in Lititz, PA. Together they pastor a Micro Church Network under DOVE USA. They started City Gate Lancaster in 2007 and have expanded to other cities. Kim leads Her Legacy, a regional women’s movement that teaches and empowers women with the Word of God. Kim has led worship for over 20 years and written many worship songs. Sharing insights in spirituality with others has been her passion since a young age. Kim and Brian have two daughters and one son-in-law. Follow Kim on Facebook and follow her blog here!