by Phyllis Ducey

Christmas is now come and gone. We have a little over 360 days until it returns. Whew! Just enough time to prepare for next year's round! But first time to start thinking about my new year’s goals. Do you do them? “They” say that if you write down your goals, you are 90% likely to accomplish them.

I actually have found that true though I do not write them down each year. For the past 25 plus years my number one goal is to become closer to God. The years I have actually written that down, I have achieved it. I am not a big goal setter so I do not have huge lists. They stay focused around God, marriage and family for the most part. It seems, as I get older, one year blurs into another with very little to distinguish one from the other so my memory of each year’s goals are also a blur.

I don’t know if you are a TV watcher or maybe I should say are you an “end of the world predictor watcher”? I’m not but I am aware that there are numerous shows and movies focused on the end of the world being eminent. Is it possible? Yes, it has been possible for the last 1, 960 or so years. Biblically is it likely? I have no idea. Does it matter? Only to the extent that if you knew it was coming in 2012 (as the media seems to want to exploit) then would it change how you live your life next year?

I have been thinking about that lately and as I consider this year what my goals will be I plan to make them as if it is the last year prior to the start of the end of the world. I do not truly think that 2012 will be the end, however, I want to make this year count.

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. Mark 13:31-33
My first goals will be to draw closer to God.
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. James 4:7-9
If there was only a year left, I would want to make sure everyone I loved, everyone I knew and everyone possible would come to understand that Christ died for their sins and that they could have eternal life through Him. I was not given the gift of evangelism and I have tried my hardest to share with those in my family who think I am well intentioned but foolish in my beliefs. There is only one way to be effective that is through prayer. I don’t change hearts that is God’s job. Which leads me to this year’s primary goal for me: to become a woman of diligent prayer.

I pray. I pray frequently during the day but I want to pray with mighty diligence.

Mighty (per
great in amount, extent, degree, or importance; exceptional

Diligence (per
constant and earnest effort to accomplish what is undertaken; persistent exertion of body or mind.

Can you imagine what type of year it could be if we each mightily and diligently prayed for everyone we know, for the rulers of the world, for the countries we live in, for those who suffer for Christ's sake? What a powerfully spiritual year this could be!

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel Ephesians 6:18-19


Personal note:
As I noted last week (A Wonder), I have completed my year's commitment to weekly posts. I now will post once a month on the second Monday of the month. It really has been a joy to me.

Have a blessed New Year filled with Christ's love and peace!
Your sister in Christ,


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Print - Light of the World by tiffysart

Comments (8)

On December 27, 2010 at 6:08 AM , myeuropeantouch said...

Fabulous post Phyllis, for myself I would add Tenacity!
"Tenacity" means to stick with something even when the going gets tough. Never give up. Never surrender! Tenacity all so means the quality or state of being.
Blessings, Monika

On December 27, 2010 at 8:39 AM , Christie Cottage said...

This is a wonderful post. I pray all the time. It is a wonderful thing to do. I tell people that GOD hangs out with me all the time and I talk to him all day!

Praying is such a blessing. Knowing that GOD is always with us. Even when we are in a bad mood!HE stands with us!

Wishing you each a year full of HIS blessings!


On December 27, 2010 at 9:19 AM , watercolors said...

Phyllis, that is a resolution we all should want - Draw closer to God.

You mentioned, "I was not given the gift of evangelism..." You might need to rethink that. You have a wonderful way of writing and relating and in turn always give God the glory.
I always enjoy your devotions.
God bless and a Jesus filled new year.

On December 27, 2010 at 10:20 AM , Sue Runyon said...

You said exactly what I wanted to say about Phyllis and her gift of evangelism, Roxanne. The main readers of the CAST blog may not be the lost, but I'm sure some wander in here sometimes and your light has been shining brightly here all year. Thanks so much!

On December 27, 2010 at 11:05 AM , Graceful Moments said...

What a wonderful post, Phyllis! We should live each day as if it will be our last...because we never know when it will be! Even if the world does not come to an end, it might be the last day of our own, individual life. I too believe that each of us is called to tell the Good News of Jesus Christ. We can't bring anyone to Jesus--only God can open someone's heart to receive Him--when they want to receive him. But we can plant the seeds and water and let the Holy Spirit do the rest. You sow those seeds everyday when you live your life as a Christian and an example to others! God bless you!

On December 27, 2010 at 2:14 PM , MYSAVIOR said...

Phyllis - You are a blessing and I look forward to the second Monday of the month.
I love your selections also.
I do pray all day in my head and out loud, although I am not sure if I pray mightily.


On December 27, 2010 at 9:02 PM , SINCERITY said...

Hello! Wonderful blog! I too want to be a better Christian this coming year. Prayer is so important when it comes to living as God desires us to live. And it becomes even more important when we desire for the salvation of those we know are unsaved.

Be encouraged! God sees your heart and hears your prayers. Even though at this point-in-time we don't see immediate answers He is working to do something wonderful.

Feel free to visit my blog. :)

God bless!

On December 28, 2010 at 2:45 PM , Melanie - SqueakyBug Specialties said...

Phyllis, I echo some of the other comments that you do have a gift of evangelism. Your heart for it definitely shines through your post!!
Thank you for this devotion. I would also add to be specific when we pray. That is something I struggle with. I let the busy-ness of life get in the way and end up with big, generic prayers. When we are specific, it is so easy to see the answers to our prayers which I love to share with others as my evangelism tool.
You are a blessing!!