Local lifestyle columnists

Seeking God’s favor in 2014

By From page C3 | January 05, 2014

The start of a new year is the traditional time that we take inventory of our life and resolve to do better. Perhaps you have set some noble goals for 2014 that will improve your life.

God wants you to have the best life possible, not only by spending eternity with him in heaven, but also while you are here on Earth. In John 10:10, Jesus said, “I come that thy might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” God wants you to enjoy the life he has given you.

If you look around at others you may see many people struggling with emotional, physical and spiritual problems. You might be one of them.

Surprisingly, some who are struggling appear to have all this life has to offer. Yet, they are unhappy and lead an unfulfilled life. Possessions and riches bring them contentment or purpose.

What good is it to have all life offers if we lose our soul? In Matthew 16:26 Jesus wrote: “For what shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul.”

How then can we have a life worth living?  It begins with a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as your lord and savior. With our sins removed, we place our self into a relationship that allows God to bless us. God will not bless sin.

There is more if we want God’s favor in 2014. After salvation, some Christians live as though God doesn’t exist. It is impossible to willfully disobey God and expect God to bless you. Consider basic Christian responsibility in these areas of our life:

  • Church attendance. In Hebrews 10:25 we read, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is.” Apparently some believers were missing church for personal reasons. While duty or sickness might impede some, it is the responsibility of all believers to attend church faithfully to worship God.
  • Giving. This is a struggle for some. Giving however was a natural expression of thanksgiving to God for all that he has done in our life. Before the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6, Jesus told his disciples that “when thou givest thine alms.” It was something he assumed they were all ready doing.

In 2 Corinthians 10:7, the Apostle Paul wrote, “God loveth a cheerful giver.” When we give with the right attitude and for the right reason, God will bless us.

  • Prayer. Also found in Matthew 6 is instruction concerning prayer. In verses 6 and 7 we read, “when thou prayest” and “when ye pray.” Again, prayer is spoken of as part of the normal Christian experience. God in his wisdom has promised to honor prayer. “Pray without ceasing” declares 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

We all want a better year than last year. That is human nature. A better year is possible if we give God first place in or life.

Having purpose and God’s blessing doesn’t mean that everything will be all right from a human point of view. It mean that God will be with you as you travel this life’s journey.

Christians have the opportunity to see God work in a remarkable way. Obedient Christians live a victorious life in Christ. Then when this earthly life is over, we can see the true value of living for God for all eternity. God has promised living for him will be worth it.

The Rev. Art Zacher is pastor at Berean Baptist Church in Fairfield. He can be reached at [email protected]

The Rev. Art Zacher


Discussion | 12 comments

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  • JoshJanuary 05, 2014 - 7:23 am

    There is probably no God. So stop worrying and enjoy your life.

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  • CD BrooksJanuary 05, 2014 - 7:46 am

    "When we give with the right attitude and for the right reason, God will bless us." Really? Nice Zacker, why don't you just invite folks in, pick them up by the cuffs of their pants and turn them upside down? Good grief.

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  • The MisterJanuary 05, 2014 - 7:49 am

    God's real, Josh, but He didn't say you have to give 10 percent and He did say that you have to do works. See Colossians 2 (all of it, but particularly beginning at verse 16). Salvation does not come from works of any kind... but through the Grace of Christ... and all you have to do is to accept this Holy Gift. Sure it's nice to study together and to worship together and to have potlucks (mind the hair)... but none is required to seek God's favor in 2014.

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  • JoshJanuary 05, 2014 - 9:21 am

    You're more than welcome to believe whatever you like, "The Mister," but not all of us believe in god(s).

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  • The MisterJanuary 05, 2014 - 10:15 am

    I think you probably do... the one in the mirror.

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  • ArtimusJanuary 05, 2014 - 10:00 pm

    Stops play you game Josh. I got you number. Instead of your intellect like interpreting the bible like you of context, please enjoy you life. I got your number. Fool is has said in the heart, the is no God. Search at that.

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  • rlw895January 05, 2014 - 10:13 pm

    Good to hear from you again, Artimus. I hope you are well

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  • JoshJanuary 05, 2014 - 10:38 pm

    You're right, Artimus. Your God is the best God. In fact, he's the only God. All other Gods are ridiculous, made up rubbish. Not yours though. Yours is real.

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  • MadelineJanuary 05, 2014 - 9:01 am

    Most people don't understand human basic laws of physics ie remove something and other things move in to fill up the space. That is as watered down as i dare get. When one gives what they wish when they First have their money God fills the space from His infinite laws of the bank of abundance. Also as humans we can see this in our own lives witnessed monthly when the government takes our taxes and we make do with the rest. I myself support an organization monthly as well as give and have experienced God's Laws of Physics firsthand. Truly an amazing experiment which I plan to continue as I do not miss the funds and have food, shelter and love. Peace out. Madeline.

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  • The MisterJanuary 05, 2014 - 10:19 am

    I agree with you, Madeline, that in giving, you get so much more in return. My point is that when the organization called "church" insists that you "give"... it is no longer giving. It's paying your temple tax. I can think of NOTHING good that ever came from taxes.

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  • PornacJanuary 05, 2014 - 9:50 am

    Give to the Church! They have lawyers, scratch that, bills to pay.

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  • PornacJanuary 05, 2014 - 10:43 am

    Taxes bad. Get a job and build your road to your fortress.

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