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Monday, January 30, 2017

Inspired by . . . January: a look back

Then came old January, wrapped well
In many weeds to keep the cold away
Yet, did he quake and quiver like to quell
And blewe his nayles to warm them if he may;
For they were numbed with holding all the day,
An hatchet keene, with which he felled the wood
And from the trees did lop the needlesse spary.
Fuerie Queen & Spenser
(As recorded by Edith Holden in The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady)

* * *

This year, I'm continuing my month-end practice of looking back at the previous month in pictures - often with a few words mixed in. 

January itself is a month when we tend to look back at the year before and plan for the year ahead. I did some of that here.

January is, for me, a rather bleak month. And you can hear a yearning for spring in most of my posts this month.

Even most of the photos seem to lack their usual color.

January was a bit different for me this year in that I didn't feel the normal let down after the Christmas holiday. The wonder hasn't faded. I think the reason for that is, in part, because I haven't stopped seeking Him. His birth has given way to the manifestation of His presence and I'm intentionally seeking Him daily. [click to tweet]

One of the ways I seek Him is through prayer. Far from being an easy discipline, I know I'm not alone in my struggles to learn how to "pray without ceasing."

One of the tools I'm using is Timothy Keller's book on Prayer. In just the introduction he tells us, 
"We must know the awe of praising His glory, the intimacy of finding His grace, and the struggle of asking His help, all of which can lead us to know the spiritual reality of His presence."
To which my soul responds, "Yes, exactly!"

He then goes on to help us in Understanding Prayer and Doing Prayer. I'm only on chapter four and already I feel like his words have had an impact on my prayer life.

Our words matter. Both the words we offer to God and the words we speak to each other. I've been struck anew this month by just how much words impact our lives. Carefully choosing the sources of the words we listen to and the frequency with which we tune into those sources doesn't mean ignoring the world around us. However, our first and last source for Truth should always be God's word. [click to tweet]
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (Rom 12:2)


Sharing inspiration here:
Testimony Tuesday, #TellHisStory,
Thought Provoking Thursday, Grace & Truth,
Inspire Me Monday, RaRa Link Up, Intentional Tuesday,
#WordswithWinter, Titus 2 Tuesday, Thoughtful Thursdays,
Encourage Me Monday, Wholehearted Wednesday,
Women with Intention Wednesdays, Word Filled Wednesday,
#GiveMeGrace, Sitting Among Friends, #Glimpsesofhisbeauty
Counting My Blessings, Grace Moments,  Life thru the Lens

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If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June