As the New Year approached, we talked with the kids about what things they would like to achieve this next year. We explained that a good goal is picking an area in your life that you want to improve. Here is what the boys came up with:
Alex (71/2)- he first said to improve his time on the new car racing game he got for Christmas. Then seriously said: to work on completing my math homework on time!
Evan (5 1/2) - to have Papa teach him soccer so he can become a better player and maybe win a trophy when he gets older. (This was a shock since Alex is the soccer fanatic and Evan only likes to pretend to play!)
Rachel (2 1/2)- our goal for her: to learn the alphabet
We also thought it would be good to think of some spiritual goals for them. We will be sitting down with each of them individually and discussing these. They will each work on a memory verse related to their goal. We hope that, by God's grace, their hearts will be softened to His word and grow in love for Him this year.
Alex- grow in his desire to hear God's word and apply it to his life. Lately he doesn't want to hear Bible stories and complains about having to go to church.
"And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength." Mark 12:30
Evan-living peaceably (he seems to find joy in provoking his brother or sister.)
"Do unto others what you would have them do to you." Matt. 7:12
Rachel: controlling her reactions. She wants her way and lets you know it. We will definitely be focusing on learning self-control and responding in love.
"A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger." Proverbs 15:1
Mykhaylo and I thought of some for ourselves as well.
Myself: not being self-reliant and thinking I can get through the day on my own strength.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make straight your paths." Proverbs 3:5-6
Also, I want to apply God's word to the situation and recall it to mind before I react.
"But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves." James 1:22
Mykhaylo: wants to be more of a servant.
"And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, "If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all."" Mark 9:25
Of course, we can't accomplish any of this on our own strength but by His grace. Our desire to cultivate meek and gentle spirits will only develop through daily quiet time with God.