Saturday, January 16, 2016

"Don't Be Such a Chicken"- May

1.  Ask God to help you find a new “verse of the month” and a new “word of the month.”  Post it where you can see it.  And ask Him to help you apply it.  (And/or ask Him if there is any task/challenge He wants to give you this month.)

2.  Pick two or three new people to pray for this month.  Write their names down, pray for them daily, and ask God if there is anything specific you should pray for about them. 

3.  What five trials have you gone through that you are now thankful for?  Why are you thankful for them?

4.  Pick another item from your “nice things to do for others” list and find time to do it this month.

5.  Ask God:  “Am I transparent with You?  If not, what am I afraid of?  Do I hide from You in any way or edit my prayers for any reason?  To sound holier?  To hide doubts?  To cover up for sin?   Because I don’t feel worthy?  Etc.?” 
6.  What are five things you are thankful for about the planet/universe?

7.  Spend at least 30 minutes away from all technology at least three times this week and do something peaceful and relaxing instead.  Protect your “alone time” and your time with your family.

8.  Ask God:  “Am I more concerned with my service to You than I am with my relationship with You?  Or with what others think of my ‘good Christian service’?  Basically, do I try to earn Your love and good graces?  What do You want to say about it?”  
9.  What are five animals you are thankful for?

10.  Pick a verse you’ve always wanted to memorize.  Now memorize it.

11.  Ask God:  “Do You have anything to say to me concerning my view of or use of the Bible?” 

12.  What are five soft things you are thankful for?

13.  Make plans now to buy or plant a new plant, herb, or flower.  Everyone should grow something, even if it’s just an indoor plant or container plant.  And if you are saying, “But my thumb is not green; it’s black,” get a pothos (for an indoor plant) or put out cosmos seeds for outside plants.  These are basically fool-proof.  I neglect my poor pothos so much and my birds chew off lots of leaves, and yet it still lives when I finally give it some water. 
            (If you cannot do this or already have enough plants, buy/make a birdfeeder or birdhouse and put it in your yard, buy/make a yard decoration, go for a walk and collect something you find in nature, get a field guide and learn the names of the plants, birds, or bugs that you see on a walk, or buy a plant for someone else.  The point is, get involved in and appreciate the natural world that God gave us.)

14.  Ask God:  “What would others say about my relationship with You if they looked at my life, at who I am in private?  What do You want to say about it?”

15.  What are five things that you’ve never had happen to you (or your family) that you are thankful never happened?

16.  Do the thing that you have been putting off or procrastinating about!  Write that letter, clean up that mess, fix what is broken, approach that person, let go of that grudge, make a decision finally, fulfill that promise you made, do the thing you have resisted doing.  Do it before summer and you’ll feel better.

17.  Ask God:   “When it comes to relationships or dreams or desires, what am I still looking for or aching for?  What do You want to tell me about that?” 

18.  What are five historical things you are thankful for?

19.  Choose from your “nice things to do for yourself” list.  And do it soon.

20.  Ask God:  “Is there a hobby I should pursue or something that I can add to my life to enrich it?”

21.  What are five cold things you are thankful for?

22.  If you do not regularly treat yourself to something special, go out and buy yourself something that makes you smile or that touches your heart, even if it’s just from the dollar store.  Or maybe it’s just a nice cup of coffee and some quiet time to drink it.  (But if you normally do treat yourself, buy something special and give it away.)

23.  Ask God:  “If 1 is total self-sufficiency and 100 is total reliance on You/humility, where am I on the scale?  In what ways do I need to stop trying to live in my own wisdom, power, or self-sufficiency and to submit to You, to give You the control and the right to sit on the throne?”

 24.  What are five blessings in disguise you are thankful for?

25.  Pick another room or closet in your house and clean it out, finding at least 10 things to get rid of.

26.  Ask God:  “Am I teachable, Lord?  Do I have a soft heart?  Do I run ahead of You, fail to seek Your guidance in any area, or resist You or hide from You in any way?  Have I rebelled or disobeyed anything that You have asked me to do?  What should I do about it now?”

27.  What five movies/shows are you thankful for?

28.  Go for a walk sometime soon (or if it’s not good weather, find a quiet place to sit) and just talk to God about whatever is on your mind.

29.  James 5:16: “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” 
            Ask God:  “How can I become more powerful and effective in prayer?” 

30.  What five sounds are you thankful for?

31.  Is there any vow or promise you made that you haven’t yet fulfilled or that you are failing to keep?  Do the right thing now.  (If need be, talk the situation over with God for insight and help.)

Why might we hide from God?  What in our lives or hearts might show that we are trying to live self-sufficiently?  How might we try to earn God’s love and grace?  What are indications that we are not teachable and don’t have a soft heart?  And what special indulgences do you like to treat yourself to?  (Cold frappuccino in the summer.  Hot café mocha in the winter.  Aww, yeah!)  Any other comments?