“The righteous keep moving forward, and those with clean hands become stronger and stronger.” – Job 17:9 NLT
There are two kinds of people in the world—those who ask why? and those who ask why not? Following the Lord Jesus Christ is more about asking, why not?
Let’s consider some differences between “why” people and “why not” people:
• Why people look for excuses. Why not people look for opportunities.
• Why people are afraid to make mistakes. Why not people don’t want to miss out on God-ordained opportunities.
• Why people back down. Why not people stand up.
• Why people play defense. Why not people play offense.
• Why people stay on the sidelines. Why not people play on the front lines.
• Why people pray for God to reward them. Why not people pray that they will reward others.
I am afraid that in many cases we have reduced righteousness to the absence of doing wrong. Goodness, however, is not simply the absence of badness. You can do nothing wrong and still do nothing right! Righteousness is about doing what is biblically right and finding consistent joy in it. This is what separates us from religious ideologues. We do what is right for the advancement of the rule and reign of Christ in us and through us! We do what is right to impact our culture so that Christ is glorified and revealed in all we do!
“For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness (righteousness) and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 14:17 NLT
I trust you have had a good time answering the retrospective questions for 2023. Now I am putting forth 10 pithy statements, which I hope will challenge you to live your life with biblical intentionality in 2024. I hope these will help us move forward and encourage us not to settle for past successes.
10 Statements about moving forward:
To cement the reality of these statements into your inner person I would suggest you look up each passage of Scripture I listed. To make a greater impact find your own verses that support the statement. To make an even great impact discuss one or two with your family, life group, or other friends. Enjoy!
- Expand your horizons. There are spiritual spheres in which the Holy Spirit is leading you to enter Acts 16:9-10.
- Accumulate and record your experiences Malachi 3:16.
- Enjoy the journey Nehemiah 8:10!
- Don’t let what is wrong with you keep you from doing what is right with you and right with God 1 Corinthians 4:3-5.
- Burn sinful bridges Hebrews 12:1.
- Blaze new trails Revelation 3:8.
- It is not about winning a battle it is about winning others over 2 Corinthians 5:11-15.
- Don’t let fear dictate your decisions Acts 4:3&13.
- Take a leap of faith and believe He will reward your faith Hebrews 11:6.
- Do things that will live on after you die Acts 13:36.
I realize how inundated we are with Christian information– excellent devotionals, powerful YouTube videos, profound teachings from biblically accurate scholars, and godly websites filled with solid biblical information. I also understand that what I have written could be a little overwhelming. But remember… holiness comes in bits. Take a little from this teaching, apply it, and 2024 will be smattered with godly victories and great joy in your life!
The Lord God uses not only what we know… He empowers us who attempt to apply what we know.
“But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.” – James1:22 NLT Yikes☺!
I close with the verse I am claiming for you and for me in 2024. I am intentionally repeating it from my last article, A LOOK BACK.
“For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” – Zephaniah 3:17 NLT