life and faith

Let’s start at the very beginning


In the words of the song  ‘Do-Re-Mi’ from the ‘Sound of Music’:

“Let’s start at the very beginning
A very good place to start.
When you read you begin with A-B-C..”


The new alphabet of activity I am learning for this year begins with – ‘A’ for Attending


My priority is:

  • To attend to God’s voice
  • Listen well
  • Respond with prompt obedience instead of the usual vacillation 
  • Run to the throne not the phone
  • Make prayer less of a monologue and more of a dialogue

Sounds impressive. Gulp! Making and reading this list is one thing; carrying it out is quite another. I know my own wayward, easily distracted heart and I don’t expect to be able to do these things perfectly at all.

Bad habits don’t change overnight. Good habits take at least 21 days to establish. Baby steps one step at a time is the way forward.

In doing so I’m in pursuit of my God-sized dream for 2013:

‘To draw closer to God and discover His specific plan for me creatively and personally’

 This week I am challenged to “Do one thing to move forward” in my goal. Scripture challenges me with these verses as I attempt to live out what I aim to achieve:

“So if you’re serious about living the new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up and be alert to what is going on around Christ – that’s where the action is. See things from His perspective” ~ Colossians 3:1 – 3  The Message (emphasis added)

So what will it mean to ‘attend’ to God?

  • Wait on
  • Be present
  • Go regularly to
  • Give attention to
  • Listen to
  • Apply oneself
  • Direct one’s mind and efforts towards
  • Be a companion

My one thing to move forward in my goal is:

Starting my day with reading ‘Jesus Calling’ by Sarah Young accompanied by ‘Prayer Journal – Developing a Conversation with God’ by Joyce Huggett. (Okay, 2 things really but they link together!)

The book by Sarah Young was a requested Christmas gift and I had no idea what a beloved treasure it would prove to be. Sarah shares her personal messages from the Lord over a period of time, with Bible verses linking to the theme. Many of these messages are speaking greatly into my life too. I yearn for her experience:

“The practice of listening to God has increased my intimacy with Him more than any other spiritual discipline..” ~ Sarah Young in ‘Jesus Calling’

I am using the Prayer Journal’s ‘Prayer Jottings’ section – which Joyce notes as a place for recording prayer jottings where we write to God and He writes to us” (emphasis added) to record my conversations with God as He speaks to me in various ways from scripture, music, conversations with others, glimpses of His glory around me, art and literature, and personal words tenderly spoken directly from His Father heart to my heart.

So far I have been amazed at the amount of words which the Father is pouring into my life and equally ashamed at how little I listened before – to my detriment.

I’d like to close with a prayer by Ken Gire:

“A Prayer for Grace”

Thank you, God,

For those moments in my life
when You opened a window
and offered a word
that nourished the hunger in my soul.

Give me the grace to realize
that these are the words I live by,
not by bread alone
whatever form that bread may take
however satisfying it may seem at the time.

Give me grace to live not just reflectively but receptively,
that I may not only notice when a window is opened
but also receive what is offered,
understanding that what is offered
is my soul’s daily bread.

©KenGire1996 from ‘Windows of the Soul’

Pause to ponder:

What is capturing your attention this year?


Is God asking you to prioritise your activities?


In this post I am linking up with Holley Gerth’s God-sized Dream. 

I am grateful to have the company, encouragement and support from Holley, her team and the wonderful women also participating in this journey. Do join us!

12 Comments

  1. Tami 15th January 2013
    • Joy Lenton 15th January 2013
  2. kimmie stuckinscared 15th January 2013
    • Joy Lenton 15th January 2013
  3. Anonymous 15th January 2013
    • Joy Lenton 15th January 2013
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  5. Positively Alene 15th January 2013
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    • Joy Lenton 17th January 2013
  7. Pingback: Age cannot wither - Words of Joy 19th July 2015

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