As almost every child (and most adults!) know, in the first Toy Story movie, Buzz Lightyear stands on the top of a bedpost and cries out, “To infinity and beyond!” before diving into his adventure. The phrase has become part of our everyday vocabulary. As we stand poised at the beginning of a new year, here are some words that might inspire parents for what lies ahead, and shape the adventures of your family in 2017.
My friend and mentor, Dan Yeary signed all of his pastoral columns “Expectantly!” I like that! Wake up each day expecting to encounter God as you go about your work and activity. Ask God to reveal Himself to you and your family, and to use you each day to make it easier for those around you to believe in, trust and follow Jesus.
Be intentional about spiritual growth for yourself and your children.
2 Peter 3:18 tells us to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Look for specific ways to do that in 2017. Be faithful in Bible study and worship. Consider participation in a special spiritual growth opportunity like Children’s Bible Drill, a retreat or even a home study experience (for example, Henry Blackaby’s Experiencing God at Home).
Look for the teachable moment.
Beyond planned, formal instruction, children learn best when life circumstances present opportunities. Ask God to help you see and seize these moments that the rhythms of life provide– even ask God to bring them to you! Jesus constantly used everyday experiences, casual encounters and conversations to teach. Ask God to help you do the same.