- It’s the time when people are thinking about this upcoming year and about changes they would like to make – things that they believe will make this year better than last year.
- This usually involves an intentional plan and that is our topic this week.
Intentional – an attitude of purposefulness, with a commitment to deliberate action
At some point every hero in the Bible had to be intentional, even if it was just the decision to follow whatever God called him or her to do.
- We see an example of this in Daniel chapter 1
Daniel 1:8 (NLT) But Daniel was determined not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king. He asked the chief of staff for permission not to eat these unacceptable foods.
The Hebrew word for determined in this verse is way·yā·śem – It means he purposed in his heart or Intended
- Remember the definition for intentional – “an attitude of purposefulness with a commitment to action”
- Daniel made a plan and took action, not to lift himself up in the eyes of people, but to honor God. And in doing so, God did lift him up to a place of honor and influence.
- Daniel so impacted King Nebuchadnezzar that he ended up gaining understanding of who God really is.
Daniel 4:37 (NLT) “Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and glorify and honor the King of heaven. All his acts are just and true, and he is able to humble the proud.”
Many of us will make plans and take action this year. But will they be the ones that matter from a Kingdom perspective?
- Implementing a change in our life involves several stages of change to go through.
Stages of Change
- Precontemplation – failing to recognize the need for change
- Contemplation – seriously considering the need for change
- Preparation – making small changes
- Action – an example would be exercising for six months
- Maintenance – making a long-term change a lifelong commitment
Today, we are going to start a plan to be intentional in every area of our life this year
- We often speak about the 5 Spheres. It’s simply a visual aid we have created to help us understand what we see in the book of Ephesians. In Ephesians, Paul is describing how we are supposed to grow to become more like Jesus in every sphere of our life.
- The 5 spheres are:
- Abiding relationship with God, Church, Home, World, Spiritual Realm
Take time to write out a plan for every area of our life.
Hebrews 5:14 (NLT) Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong.
ABIDE – How will you spend intentional time each day to become more like Jesus?
CHURCH – What is God calling you to do in regard to connecting to His body – the Church?
HOME – How can you be more like Jesus with family, roommates or friends at home?
WORLD – What changes do you need to make where you work, live and play?
SPIRITUAL REALM – How will you intentionally recognize & engage in spiritual warfare?
- We’re going to fail at this sometimes. God’s not expecting us to be perfect, but He does desire that we would be intentional with how we use this life He has given us.
Philippians 3:12-14 (NLT) I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.