After 2020, maybe you need a little encouragement for the New Year. No matter what you faced last year, let’s dream a new dream for 2021. I believe this can be our best year yet friends! I pray this post can shine a little light on wherever you are today and help you move into January with a smile on your face and hope in your heart.
Encouragement for the New Year
If you’ve ever had one of those days (months…years) when you feel like quitting, then read on. These are sure to lift you up.
After Fred Astaire’s first screen test in 1933, the director noted, “Can’t act! Slightly bald. Can dance a little.”
Louisa May Alcott, the author of Little Women, was encouraged to find work as a servant or seamstress.
Beethoven’s violin teacher once told him he was a “hopeless composer.”
Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor for lack of ideas.
Thomas Edison’s teacher said he was too stupid to learn anything.
Albert Einstein didn’t speak until he was four years old and didn’t read until he was seven. His teachers described him as mentally slow.
Sir Isaac Newton did poorly in grade school.
Babe Ruth, when he retired from baseball, set the home run record (714), but he also held the record for the most strikeouts (1,330).
Winston Churchill failed sixth grade.
And…One basketball player missed 9,000 shots in his career. He lost more than 300 games. Twenty-six times he was trusted to take the game’s winning shot and missed. His name is Michael Jordan. He said, “I’ve failed over and over again in my life. And that’s why I succeed.
Encouragement for the New Year
Maybe you woke up last year on January 1st with big dreams, big plans, and big ideas about how you were going to achieve them. Then, 2020. No one saw that coming. And as hard as we all tried, none of us could truly escape the many challenges that we faced this year. However, there are also so many good things that happened. For instance, quarantine showed many families that they could homeschool their children–and ENJOY it. Many people I know (including me!) took up new art forms, learned to play instruments, pivoted in their careers, and built new and exciting things while stuck at home. Families spent time together baking, singing, playing games, learning new skills, watching fun films (and lots of youtube tutorials), and getting to know each other better.
Out of adversity, came ingenuity. Out of our trials, we became stronger, more resilient people.
This is not to downplay the fact that many faced hard things this year. And if you experienced loss in 2020, or you’re facing anxiety about the new year to come, I want you to know there is someone who cares.
1 Peter 5:7 says this, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
This seems like such a simple statement. Yet when Peter wrote this, he wrote from Babylon–believed to be a Roman military outpost. His readers would have been familiar with suffering and that’s evident in the very next sentence he writes,
“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.”
We see this today. The struggles that we faced in the last year (and maybe still face today) we faced globally. We faced them as families, communities, the world. Together. And that’s how God wants us to move forward as well–as a body, building each other up. He longs to see His Church loving each other and lifting each other up during these times.
That’s exactly why I’m here. I want to lift you up and give you encouragement for the New Year. My heart is to provide stories, podcasts, and courses that guide you forward into all God has for you in the next year. My hope is to be a bearer of His light and a bringer of His hope. I know that no matter what we face, no matter what lies ahead, God will be there through it all and He will guide and direct and protect us as we turn to Him. I hope the next sentence of this scripture encourages and comforts you.
“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”
Happy New Year! Let’s believe in the Godness of God in 2021!
Encouragement for the New Year
Now, more than ever, it’s so important to pray for our families and to teach them God’s Word and to apply His will to their lives.
My book Praying Through The Bible in One Year allows you to do both!
Praying Through the Bible in One Year is a Scripture Reading Plan and Guided Journal in one. This book helps you read and apply God’s Word to your life. My desire is for this journal to guide you as you seek God and His truth.
It’s divided into three parts:
1. A Scripture Reading Plan. This plan takes you from Genesis to Revelation. Reading four or five chapters a day, you’ll read through the whole Bible in one year! Each week has five days of reading, leaving the weekends for catch up.
2. A Daily Scripture. Pause on these verses, read them closely, and consider how they can impact your prayers for your kids.
3. A Prayer Prompt. Through these prompts, you’ll focus on ways you can pray for your kids. Blank space is provided for you to continue the prayer or to write down other meaningful Scriptures that you read during the day’s reading.
Leave a Legacy
Did you know I created a free course to help you master the skill of journaling through the Bible to create a Legacy Bible for your own children?
Join me as I guide you in sharing God’s Word with your children or grandchildren through the pages of your own journaling Bible. Through this free, 6-week course you’ll discover how to share your own personal reflections through the pages of God’s Word.
It’s such a meaningful way to pass on heartfelt prayers alongside your favorite Scripture passages, leaving a heritage of faith. Each journal entry will be a treasured gift to future generations.
Great Resources for Creating a Legacy Bible:
How to Pray for Your Child Each Day
Do you need a little help to start praying for your children? So many times I find myself praying for the same things for my children.
That they are healthy.
That they are obedient.
The other day I was reading the Bible, and I came upon Philippians 1:9-11:
I pray that your love will overflow more and more,
and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.
For I want you to understand what really matters,
so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return.
May you always be filled with the fruit of your salvation—
the righteous character produced in your life by Jesus Christ—
for this will bring much glory and praise to God. (NLT)
As I read it I thought: This is a perfect Scripture to pray for my kids. So I created a PDF to help me pray. I hope it helps you too. Please download the PDF and insert your child’s name. This will guide you as you begin to lift them up daily.
Sunday: Pray for love that overflows
Lord, may the love of _______ increase and overflow for those in our family and for everyone else. (1 Thessalonians 3:12)
Monday: Pray for growth in knowledge
Lord, may _______ grow to love your Word. May the heart of _______ trust your commands. May _______ seek good judgment. Fill _______ with the knowledge of your will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives. (Psalm 119:66, Colossians 1:9)
Tuesday: Pray for understanding of what really matters
Lord, may _______ know your will and understand what is right because of your law. May _______ not copy the behavior and customs of this world, but be transformed into a new person through changed thoughts and through knowing your perfect and pleasing will. (Romans 2:18, Romans 12:2)
Wednesday: Pray for a pure and blameless life
Lord, may _______ keep firm in their faith, staying pure and blameless, until the end. May the good work you started in _______ carry on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. May _______ hold firmly to the word of life, so life’s labor will not be in vain. (1 Corinthians 1:8, Philippians 1:6, Philippians 2:6)
Thursday: Pray for the fruit of salvation
Lord, may _______ be like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. May _______ delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. And because of your word planted deep, may whatever _______ do prosper. (Psalm 1:2-3)
Friday: Pray for righteous character and for a life in Jesus
Lord, may _____ be a peacemaker who sows in peace and reaps a harvest of righteousness. Lord, may your name be honored because of the life of _______. I know this is only possible because of your grace. May love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control flow of the life of _______ because of your spirit within. (James 3:18 2 Thessalonians 1:12, Galatians 5:22-23)
Saturday: Pray for glory and praise to God
Lord, may _______ produce much fruit so that you may be glorified. May the life of _______ be for your praise and glory, because of hope put in you. (John 15:8, Ephesians 1:14)
As parents, it’s important to pray for our kids, and I’m so thankful that God has given us His Word as a foundation to do just that!
I have created a free PDF for you on How to Pray For Your Child Each Day