Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Putting First Things First in 2008


Happy New Year! I just came back from an evening run where my dog pulled me the whole way. On top of my head sat a zillion sprawling stars sprinkled over my city street. Doesn't happen often that we can view a starry sky on my street---must be exceptionally dark in Benbrook tonight. And it's pretty neat that it coincided with reading Genesis 1 in the Bible today. It's not dark in my soul, though. It's the first day of the new year and I hold such hope in my heart. We've closed the chapter dated 2007 which was, by far, the hardest year of my life. Psalm 27:13 - I would have despaired had I not believed that I would see the goodness of my God in the land of the living!


No one knows what this coming year holds for any of us. But I'm on my knees so very grateful to my beautiful God tonight that my year ended in hope not despair. Sometimes, I don't know how shifts happen. I'm just so grateful they do! For my God is showing up in my life and I can't be any more grateful---did I just say that? Smile.


This is my one year blog-a-versary. I have found a safe haven, a community where acceptance reigns not judgment. And I can't thank you enough for that. You have meant so much to me this year where life has interrupted long standing friendships. You'll never know how God has used your kindness, your encouragement, your support. So, thanks for stopping by and allowing God to use you on this journey on a narrow road. Matthew 7:14.


When, I started this blog thing, it took me 6 months to figure out how to use blogger.com---in fact, I set up seven blogs before I could get one to work. And I couldn't remember the passwords to any of them---my college son looked at me in utter amazement. LOL.


I quoted C.S. Lewis in my very first post: “You can’t get second things by putting them first; you can get second things only by putting first things first.” Matthew 6:33. So, once again this new year, may we put first things first.


I am very good at setting goals and going after them---have been doing it all my life. But this year, as I set my goals for 2008, it's different. And I keep thinking and meditating on Galatians 3:3 - "After beginning with the Spirit, are you trying to attain your goals by human effort?" We can do a lot by our sheer will power. But what can be explained in our lives by the fact that God did it. It's not about how strong I am to accomplish my goals---it's all about how strong He is in me. He is our awesome God who paints the landscapes of our skies and souls with hope. Happy New Year to each of you. I hope 2008 will be a year marked with putting first things first.

19 comments:

jennyhope 1/02/2008  

I love this post and the reminder in Galatians. One goal that I have had is to finish my medical transcription courses and they are so hard. I certainly will need Gods help and the want to to finish in 3 months. i luv the cs lewis quote...morgan is still awake at 1.20 she kills me. oh and i am with you about the love and not judgment. sometimes i even leave church more beat up than when i got there. =) The blog has been so encouraging!

Deborah 1/02/2008  

Happy New year from South Africa. I have missed my morning tea break with your blog as my girlfriend time. Hope this year is fulled with wonderful adventures in Him. Love always Deborah

Fran 1/02/2008  

LOVED Galations 3:3!!

Thank you Bev. When I read today in Genesis, I could hardly contain my heart. That same God who did "all that" is after me?! And, me after him!!

Love you. Hugs and blessings,
Fran

annie 1/02/2008  

Good morning, Bev. C.S. Lewis is usually one of those reads I have to stop and read v-e-r-y slowly, but not this one--you only get second things by putting first things first. I'm reading a little ahead as I know my schedule starting next week will be more demanding. I am praying for you,Jennyhope, also, as you finish your difficult coursework. "First" and "second" Blessings to each of you. annie

Bev Brandon 1/02/2008  

I prayed for you all today that you would know in your hearts when your countenance is fallen for sin is crouching at our doors but our good God has done something about that. So where do I live today, in my old ways or new ways, my new nature. May you offer others "rest" from all their trying just as Noah did. May you find favor in eyes of your God this day.

Bev Brandon 1/02/2008  

I read the first verse of Genesis and to THINK THAT WE WERE IN HIS MIND when that first verse was written...ooohhh! You were in His mind when He set about to create this world. Praying for you that we would learn to "rest" from all our labor just as God did---learn to rest in our souls in those places that are not at rest. Praying that we won't hide from the presence of our Lord. He sees everything---why do I think what I do and not repent---for He is listening. Praying for us that we deal with the enmity in our souls.

Patty 1/02/2008  

Happy Blog-o-versary and I am so blessed to have found you in the blog world and God is so good to cross our paths. I loved this post! I have done my reading up to this day and I am writing down things as God gives them to me so that I can share on Monday. Have a blessed day !
Love,
Patty

helenw13 1/02/2008  

It is so amazing how the Lord knits our hearts together as believers and even more miraculous that He can connect us through blogging...such a rich gift that He has given all of us this year.

Bev, I believe so many could echo that this past year has been really hard...me included...I too have trusted in the verse from Psalms...I also have camped out in II Timothy 1: 12...that I continue to know who I have believed and am confident that He will guard that which I entrust to Him...I am counting on that!

Bless you Bev...so glad that we found each other's blogs and can share in this journey together.

Michelle Bentham 1/02/2008  

Hey Benbrook Friend,

Such soul stirring words from a heart of reflection. I will continue to read through your blog as time permits... so I hope to learn more about you and your journey. What a blessing you are - thank you for making yourself known to me -- indeed a blessing.

Love and Happy New Year!
Michelle

Lindsee 1/02/2008  

Happy New Year, new friend! (Yes, I call you a friend. You are too precious!)

Your blog NEVER ceases to amaze or encourage me. Truth is always spilling over on this blog and it encourages me so!

I can't wait to meet you sometime this year. I know you aren't coming on Tuesdays, but if you ever decide to, you must let me know!!!! :)

Much love to you today!

Lindsee

Michelle Bentham 1/02/2008  

Hey Bev,

I emailed you... Thank you for such a kind response. I'm so blessed. How marvelous to read the way your life positively touches so many other lives on this blog. Your prayers are precious like incense before our God, a pleasing aroma to Him.

Blessings,
Michelle

Susan 1/02/2008  

HAPPY BLOG-A-VERSARY!

Mine is coming up in a few months. I, too, am looking forward to the coming year. Even with all of it's unknowns and changes.

Hugs, bff Bev!

Susan

Teri 1/02/2008  

Happy Blog-a-versary!
I really loved your post today. It truly resonates with what I wrote in my journal this morning. My heart is so full of gratitude. I wrote some of the exact words, like "I don't know what this year holds for me." and (writing to the Lord,) "Help me to be faithful to the last thing you told me to do and not look out ahead for what is next..."

God is so amazing to be doing the same work in many of His people! I love it when it works out like that!

You are a gem Bev! I am looking forward to seeing everything that God is going to do this year!

Hugs,
Ter

Sharon 1/02/2008  

Happy blog-a-versary!
I have one coming up this month too.
This is a good place to hang out isn't it?
God was so good to bring me to this place.
I am pleased with the sisters I have met. And I pray that by next year they are still around and we have grown deeper in our love for our Father.
I will agree with you on the roughness of the past year or two.
I know He has a purpose. Sometimes those closing doors hurt when we don't get out of their way.
But God is faithful and I anticipate what He is going to achieve through us all this coming year.
Thanks for a glimpse of the stars through your eyes.

Alana 1/03/2008  

Well, that resounded with a loud gong! I have the hardest time with this. I honestly don't feel like I've figured out how to let God do it. Is that possible when I've been a Christian all of my life?

Happy Blogoversary!

hollymark 1/03/2008  

Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart! As a 23-year old it is awesome to see older ladies walking with the Lord, and not just walking with Him like in a boring way, but loving and cherishing Him so much! I came across your blog awhile back and am inspired each time I read something! I like what you said about not achieving goals on our own efforts. Any ideas for how to do that? Bless you friend!

Profbaugh 1/07/2008  

Bev,

I just want you to know how much your comment last month ministered to me. So here's to your blog-a-versary!! Much like you, I didn't even know what a blog really was until about six months ago when the LORD urged me to start one. And oh my how He has moved here in cyberspace!

Know without a doubt that the LORD is using you in a very mighty way my Siesta. Thanks so much for letting Him flow through you directly to me. I have been truly blessed by your words of encouragement.

Much love,
~Cheryl

Bev Brandon 1/21/2008  

I DID IT I DID IT I DID IT I DID IT
I learned to link tonight...

Thank you Shonda!
Thank you Dave, whoever you are!

Okay, Fran, where am I going to keep the valuable info on how to link? Right next to that ID bracelet for Beth Moore and oh my goodness, where did I put it????

Bev Brandon 1/21/2008  

Okay, is this hilarious...I just posted on some old random post and thought I was on today's...I better take my pneumonia body to bed...so excited about linking up!!! Who in the world am I talking to? It's pretty lonely tonight in the study by myself to keep the contagious germs away from the fam...sigh...

Praying for Our Friend Joanne Psalm 131:3 Waiting on God. Hope Now. Hope Always.

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I've met some amazing women through blogging. I would love to hear from you. My personal e-mail is:
sixbrandons@gmail.com
I have another blog where I blog daily as a small group of us read through the New Testament this year. It's called A String of Pearls. We carry each other on mats (when we just can't walk anymore) to Jesus and sweet things like that.

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