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Often we begin a new year by designing goals, ideas, and perhaps resolutions. In our blog posts this January, we’re focusing instead on what the Lord is inviting us to do.
The more I thought about this topic, the more I realized how much the Lord initiates our faith-life, and how He is constantly calling us to, “Come, follow Me” (Matthew 4:19). While following Jesus begins with an invitation to a personal relationship with Him, I also realized that God invites us to continue growing in our trust and love for Him (“Come, follow Me” is the Scripture the Lord gave me for this year.)
Business Meetings with God
An important invitation came earlier this year to dialogue more deeply with the Lord about my writing. The Psalmist wrote, “My heart has heard you say, ‘Come and talk with me.’ And my heart responds, ‘LORD, I am coming’” (Psalm 27:8 NLT).
I began to practice Shelley Hitz's “Business Meetings with God”. She recommends that once a week we schedule a chunk of time to meet with God. While she focuses mainly on marketing, I’ve found her strategies to be beneficial for each stage of writing. I’m also integrating other life issues—family and household concerns, for example—to make these meetings more holistic. (My apologies--the link didn't work).
The key is to hear God’s voice. This requires intentionally spending time in quietness with Him through two-way journalling (listening prayer), asking God for clarity, strategies, and confirmation. As we journal, we listen for His whispers of direction.
Before this time, I had occasionally journalled questions and God answered with specific ideas. But now I scheduled regular meetings on Thursday or Friday. I chose my sunny upstairs spare room where the late afternoon sunlight streams in—especially important in our short winter days.
During the week, I collect questions and items to discuss—an agenda of sorts. My journal entries begin with praise and thankfulness. Then after rereading my previous week’s meeting, I begin with questions: “How do I best…?” “How would you like me to approach…?” “How can I best glorify you…?” If God doesn’t seem to answer right then, He’ll sometimes bring ideas later as I write or become busy with other tasks.
As 2022 dawns...
One outcome of these business meetings is that God is inviting me to answer this question: “What would I attempt if I were sure the Lord is infusing me with wisdom, love, courage, and strength?” Here are some of my answers:
· To maintain momentum in drafting and revising devotionals, working towards completion and into publishing. God has reminded me that to be a co-creator with Him in a new way, I’m to keep faithful in writing, and He will open doors at the right time.
· To be more daring: at the same time as I revise my devotionals, I’m exploring other avenues for writing and submitting (including to FellowScript)
· To experiment with fitting writing into cracks of time—afternoons or evenings—when I have other life responsibilities. (Often writing takes up my quality energy in the mornings, leaving other errands or tasks untended.)
Intentionality matters. He's inviting me to be hopeful, believing, and engaged in writing that will have an eternal impact and will bring honour to Him.
And now over to you…
How and in what way is God inviting you to share your days and year with Him, particularly in writing, but also in your daily responsibilities and spiritual development?
My prayer for us all: Thank You, Lord, for inviting us into what You have already planned, prepared and arranged in advance for us in 2022 and beyond. May we respond with “Yes,” to You.
Love the idea of a ‘business meeting with God’. We schedule and make time for so many things yet often fit God into our ‘cracks of time’ rather than being more intentional and disciplined about our time with Him. And having a separate time devoted just to writing, beyond our regular time with God, just makes so much sense. I feel as if a lightbulb has come on. Thanks, Sandi.ReplyDelete
I'm so glad you were inspired by the business meetings with God, Sharon! What we don't intentionally plan sometimes goes by the wayside. Business meetings with God has expanded my view of what weekly planning is all about.Delete
A Happy New Year to you!
Thank you, dear Sandi, for starting our InScribe blog strong for 2022. You've given us clear guidance concerning the January prompt.ReplyDelete
I especially appreciate your reference to journaling. Journaling with Jesus is my lifeline for hope in life and writing.
New Year's Blessings ~ Wendy Mac
Thank you, Wendy, for your comment that journaling with Jesus is your lifeline. It is becoming a key component of my daily time with the Lord, as well as with my weekly meetings with God.Delete
Blessings back to you for this year!
Thanks, Sandi. I like that: business meetings with God. And as you’ve pointed out, it can take various forms.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Robert. I hope you'll begin business meetings with God this year!Delete
Happy and blessed New Year to you Sandi! I like the idea of business meetings with God, as well. I'm going to implement this into my writing projects. I have a spot in mind at home to do this. Thank you for your helpful post.ReplyDelete
A blessed new year to you too, Alan! I'm glad you're planning starting business meetings with God! God bless you as you begin!ReplyDelete
I love this! I do a lot of journalling and I also have regular times for prayer etc. But a "business meeting" with God once a week is not something I had considered before. Brilliant! I love this! I am going to add it to my schedule!ReplyDelete
Thanks for always starting us off so strongly each month, Sandi!
So glad you'll engage in business meetings with God, Tracy! And thanks for your continued encouragement.Delete
Thank you for sharing this tool, Sandi. It fits very well with a spiritual disciplines workbook I've just started doing (you'll read more about it on the 4th, LOL). Week One starts us off on Silence and Solitude which are very important in cultivating any kind of meaningful relationship with God, hearing His voice, etc.ReplyDelete
I look forward to your post this week, Susan. Silence and solitude are key elements of a Lord-centred life!Delete