Enjoying the Journey

We are one week into the new year. How are you doing with your devotional Bible reading so far? Many believers begin at the first of the year with some goal. Perhaps you have already started. For many of us the first weeks of the year are fairly easy…then comes the daily grind. The routines of life have a way of distracting us from what truly matters. Remember that our time in God’s Word is a marathon – not a sprint. The goal is not to be in the Word for a short period of time but to live in the Word for the rest of your life. Take a new challenge. I have heard of several friends who are…

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It was quiet in the house and I was sitting in my favorite chair, reading and reflecting. The little, leather books around me were not published volumes. No one else has ever read them, but they are books that mean a great deal to me. Perhaps someday my children will read them and find some encouragement. For now it is enough that they help me to remember. They are private journals of my journey with the Lord over the past decade. As I turned page after page the Lord brought so many things to my mind – things I do not want to forget. There are levels of journal writing: Activity – This is the most basic form of journaling.…

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Today is the first day of a new month, the first day of a new year, and the first day of a new decade. God has allowed us to live to this day and to labor for Him. How blessed we all are! Joshua gave the children of Israel instructions from God as they moved forward. In Joshua 3:4 he said, “that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore.” None of us have passed this way before and all of us need divine direction. Someone stated the obvious when they said, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life!” A great year must be lived one…

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A few days ago it was my great joy to untangle the many strands of Christmas lights that somehow magically weave themselves into ridiculous knots during the off season. Why can’t these things be easy? I muttered to myself (again), “There has to be a simpler way!” Something in all of us, at all seasons, cries out for simplicity. We all have our challenges in life. With age and responsibility comes new layers of things to work through. If you are not careful, life can get very complicated! In the midst of constant turmoil and complexity the Apostle Paul said that he had to work to live his life “in simplicity and godly sincerity” (2 Corinthians 1:12). Later in the…

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Henry Longfellow was once asked how he managed a long and happy life. He pointed to an apple tree and said, “The secret of the apple tree is that it grows a little new wood every year.” Today many of us are returning to work and school, to the schedules and demands of normal life. Our first goal should always be spiritual growth. It does not come quickly, it comes gradually. One day at a time. One decision at a time. One discipline at a time. Too often we try to make huge strides and fail to take simple steps. Remember to begin with the basics. Start where you are. The Lord Jesus addressed a tree that failed to bear fruit…

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Today we stand on the threshold of 2019. How gracious God has been to us! If the Lord allows us to live until tomorrow, we will turn another page in the calendar of time. Will you make it a new beginning in your Christian life? All this week on Enjoying The Journey we are looking at great Bible passages and principles that will help us all to start again. Only by a return to first truths can we advance into all that God has for us! I would like to invite you to join us for these brief “Meditations For A New Year.” You may listen on your favorite podcast player or by visiting us online at scottpauley.org/broadcast. Very soon we will…

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As many of you know, my favorite book of the Bible is the New Testament book of Philippians. But, like one of my college professors, I too would have to say that my favorite book of the Bible is whichever one I am studying at the time! “All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable…” The gospel records receive a great deal of attention at this particular time of year because of the emphasis on the birth of Christ. However, our attention on the life, ministry, and lasting work of the Lord Jesus should not be limited to one season! We need to walk closely with our Savior every day. For several years I have tried to…

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This week a dear pastor friend and I corresponded about helpful books to share with others. As we near the end of the year I would challenge you to create a reading list for the next twelve months. Be intentional. Begin collecting the ones you do not have. Make a plan to read purposefully in the coming year. I have always found it helpful to read on a variety of subjects and to read both older and newer books. With that in mind, I would like to recommend twelve older books and twelve newer books for you to consider. While I cannot give a blanket endorsement of every author, I can tell you that each of these books has made…

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How are you doing with your goals for the new year? It is just the first week but how quickly we can forget and fail in the very areas we resolutely said we would do better in! Do not be discouraged. The year is a marathon, not a sprint…and you are just getting warmed up. The first steps of a run are the hardest. Keep moving. Push yourself. At some point you reach a rhythm. You find your stride. This is true in all of life. Most people never reach their goal because they are not hard enough on themselves. In our age of comfort and ease we have become enamored with convenience. This is never the way to victory.…

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When God speaks to us it is natural to respond to Him. The Bible should lead us to prayer! Several years ago someone gave me a book about praying the Scriptures. That truth changed my devotional life. If you pray in the will of God you can know you are praying in the will of God. God’s Word gives substance to your prayers and increases the faith needed to pray it. Charles Spurgeon said it this way: “The prayers God answers are the ones that begin with Him.” Allow the Scriptures to serve as prayer prompter. The Holy Spirit will use God’s Word to guide your prayers. Several weeks ago the Lord laid a verse on my heart in my prayer…

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