Ed & Jo Duenas
2022 The Best Version of You
YEAR 2021 is full of God’s faithfulness and goodness!
Many seek the better version of themselves as the new year approaches. Many seek to better themselves physically, spiritually, materially, or financially for the next year. We all too familiar with New Year Resolutions that we never completed with, well...resolute!
Let us share with you what we believe is the best approach to be better off next year and beyond. Whatever plans and goals we have in the next year, we cannot go wrong when we go to God for direction.
Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
Plans and goals are done with good intentions BUT we know good intentions sometimes are not good enough. We need to make sure it is God’s plan and not ours that matters. So how do we ensure that our plan is from God?
As we seek God’s guidance and direction for our lives, we go to the Word of God for clarity and stability.
Proverbs 16:9 ESV
The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
Psalm 37:23 ESV
The steps of a man are established by the Lord,
when he delights in his way;
First and foremost, we have to make sure that our hearts delight in the Lord. When our hearts delights in the Lord, we can be assured that despite of seemingly failures and desperations of our plans God is still in control. He is the one orchestrating all things and we just need to trust Him, follow, and obey.
Romans 8:28 ESV
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Delighting in the Lord also means that we need to stay close to Him in prayer and in studying His Word. It is only through prayer and studying the Bible that we can have a clear vision of what God is instructing us to go and do. Although we can plan and execute our goals, we know from the Bible that,
Jeremiah 10:23 ESV I know, O Lord, that the way of man is not in himself, that it is not in man who walks to direct his steps.
It is our Lord who will instruct us and teach us which way we should go if we stay on our knees and seek His will from His Word:
Psalm 32:8 ESV I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.
So even when we face trials and we struggle in life and ministry, we know that God’s protection and provision will not fail us.
Isaiah 58:11 ESV And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.
His Word will encourage us to press on and live the new life He has given us despite of what we may go through. And we will press on with desire to please Him and bring Him glory.
Philippians 2:13 ESV For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
We cannot go wrong when we delight in the Lord because we will be guided and directed by the Holy Spirit. We can even ask what can happen in advance if we worship God in spirit and in truth.
John 16:13 ESV When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.
This new year and beyond, let us be guided and led by our God through the Holy Spirit in everything we do as we keep our knees bended in prayer and our minds focused on His Word.
Matthew 6:33 ESV But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
"Rest assured that God has the best in mind for you and I"
Jeremiah 29:11 ESV For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Let us trust God with all our hearts and minds so we can live, move, and have our being in Him. No doubt that we will encounter problems, persecutions, oppositions, trials, and temptations in the next year but when we put our trust in the Lord, we can be secured knowing that we are on the path of righteousness.
Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV 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.
Along with putting our trust in God, we are to remain humble because humility is the lifestyle of God's kingdom. Humility keeps our hearts teachable and obedient so we can fulfill His will, purpose and calling for our lives.
Psalm 25:9 ESV He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.
We encourage you to find your best self by finding yourself delighting in the Lord. No better version of you when you seek the one who created you and love you for who you are because He has a plan and purpose for your life!
For us, we envision the new year as full of possibilities:
empowering the poor to rise from poverty;
training and empowering leaders for service;
conducting relief and recovery efforts after natural disasters;
and above all, making disciples of Christ and planting churches
Please pray for us for next year's main goals:
1. Full staffing of the Dream Center
2. Establishment of the Mission Bible Training Center
3. Start of Organic Farming Training Center
4. Planting of churches
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