This activity serves to bring our family closer by encouraging one another, recognizing the strengths God has blessed us with and identifying areas for personal focused improvement.
Proverbs 29:18 tells us “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” We all know we must “seek first the Kingdom” – but the question we asked ourselves was – what does that look like for us in our family?
The plan was straightforward. We would have monthly meetings and we would each make individual lists in the new journals of our current goals while sharing a slice of the warm pie around the table.
Spiritual Goal Challenge & Journal Pages
Writing down your mission or vision for each of your roles in this particular season of your life will help to give clarity to your priorities, motivation to your tasks, and meaning to the mundane.
While we must “examine ourselves” on a weekly basis, the wisdom of pausing to reflect over the spiritual highs and lows and patterns of the year is taught through God’s feasts. And even though we are no longer under the law of Moses, nor keep the feasts then prescribed, God’s principle of reflecting over the year still rings true.
The true goal and purpose is godliness. It is conforming to the image of Christ and manifesting God in our life. God wants us to bear fruit for Him.
But spiritual discipline and habit goals are an instrument of transformation, the prescribed source to learn how to grow in love of God and neighbor. While we will never “earn” the kingdom by ticking goal boxes, spiritual discipline and godly habits are the means God has asked us to participate with Him in transforming our minds to produce fruit for Him.
Weights? Hindrances? Burdens? We can’t let anything get in the way! In both escaping and pursuing, baggage must be cast aside, hindrances must be avoided at all cost. In our running, we must constantly identify any extra burdens and remove them.
Psalm 1 describes the man who will be blessed. He is the man who delights in the law of the LORD, and in His law meditates day and night. Like a tree, he soaks up the water of the Word of God. He is planted by the river – the source of the water – so that he can absorb it on a continual basis.
Prayer is the result of a relationship: words that come from many different emotions and circumstances, words that are said in many different environments, words that are said because the speaker believes the hearer is listening and would respond, and words that bring to mind the responsibilities of the prayer. So the purpose of prayer is that it is the way that God becomes a living and active part of our lives.
The purpose of Bible study (and any Bible intake) is to know the only True God, and Jesus Christ His son (17:3), to grow to love Him with all of our heart, soul, strength and mind (for how can we love Him whom we do not know?) The purpose of Bible study is to be “filled with the fullness of God, ” and so that the Word can “richly dwell in you,” (Col. 3:16); that God can “work in you” (Phil 2:13); and that Christ can “live in you” (Gal. 2:20, 4:19).
Fasting, or choosing voluntarily ‘to put your hand over your mouth,’ is Biblically employed by those who are fainting, longing and thirsting for God. It’s a recognition of humility, of the frailty of our flesh, and our complete and utter dependence upon God. Fasting is nearly always associated with a specific prayer or cry to God – sometimes of repentance, sometimes intercession on behalf of others, sometimes as a plea for help or guidance.
This month for our theme, we have a list of 31 verses related to “Godly friendship” – one verse to think about each day of the month. While it is not an exhaustive list of verses on friendship and some of the verses apply to relationships besides friendships, we hope that it will prove to be useful and thought-provoking for setting spiritual goals related to Godly friendship.
“God sets the solitary in families.” Psalm 68:6. Our community of believers is described Biblically in familial terms – brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers and children in the faith. Mentoring is one of the ways that we can build and embrace the spiritual family relationship. Elisha called his mentor, Elijah, “My father”, Naomi called Ruth her “daughter”, Paul called Timothy “a beloved son”, and John wrote that “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”
This month we want to take the time to assess how we are doing as a “Light to the World.” Many of our ecclesias may be involved in preaching efforts and perhaps some of us are contributors towards those efforts. However, for this month’s goal, we want to focus on introspectively assessing how we are doing at “preaching” on an individual, personal level, by asking 7 self-assessment questions.
At the end of each month, you can use this Monthly Reflections Journal Page to reflect and assess the goals and characteristics you have focused on. You can think about the actual challenges you have faced, and what you will need to do to keep progressing or maintaining even after the month is over.