2017: This Is The Year!

J. D. Conley
January 1, 2017

Resolve now that A. D. 2017 will be the year you will do the following:

Put The Kingdom First. This requires your all. It means putting the work and the needs of the church above your own. The Lord demands first place, even a close second is insufficient. Mere inclusion of the church in your life is not what the Lord requires. Just having the church somewhere in "the mix," is not pleasing to God. Let this be the year the church of our Lord attains and maintains first place in your life, (Mt.6:33).

Love God With All Your Heart, Soul, Mind And Strength. Jesus affirms "this is the first commandment" (Mk.12:30). Obviously, loving God is the greatest commandment of them all. If we comply, then everything else slots naturally into place. Loving God to this extent will insure and enrich all human relationships, from marriage on down to casual acquaintances and passersby on the street. The quest to love God to this degree is accomplished by prayer and a deep desire to do so. One must want it more than anything else! Since Jesus commands it, then it's possible to achieve. If you and I can do this, then all of God's Will is done. Obedience is the evidence of love, (Jn.14:15; 15:14; Lk.6:46).

Lead One Soul To Christ. Resolve now that this year will be the year you teach a lost soul the Gospel. This is your obligation and mine. We have been given a great commission by Christ Himself to "preach the gospel to every creature," (Mk. 16:15). This is a duty we cannot unload on someone else, rather one we must fulfill. Select one person outside of Christ on which to focus, and begin praying they will be receptive to the truth and then act upon it, (Col.4:3).

Be Faithful In Attendance. Decide now that during this new year you'll be in every worship service and Bible class. If you comply with the first three actions mentioned above, then being here each time the doors are opened will be a delight. I encourage and admonish you to be faithful in your attendance, (Lk.16:10; Heb.10:25).

Read The Bible Through And Pray More. It is past time for some to do this. By reading just three chapters a day, the Bible can be read through in a year. Make 2017 that year. Decide now to pray more, (Ps.55:17; Lk.18:1; 1Thess.5:17). Pray before you read, (Ps.119:18).

Be Ready To Depart At Any Time. Life is brief, fragile and uncertain. There is no guarantee that any of us will see this new year come to an end. Knowing this, "make your calling an election sure"(2Pet.1:10). If we do all the above, heaven will be our home, (2Pet. 1:11).