Pursue Your Relationship with Jesus and Find Your Happiness in Him in the Coming Year

Several years ago I was asked what things believers can do to pursue an authentic, meaningful relationship with God. Here are my suggestions, which are the same now as they were then:

  • Set aside time every day to spend with the Lord, reading His word, praying, listening to Him.
  • Read books that draw on the power of Scripture. Feed your heart and your mind.
  • Listen to sermons, worship music, and Scripture as you go about your day-to-day activities such as driving or doing the dishes.
  • Fellowship with other Christians within the church, the body of Christ.
  • Turn off the distractions in your life, whether that’s social media, the internet, television, etc.

I encourage you to consider how you can put these suggestions into practice in 2018, and find deeper happiness in knowing Jesus.

One thought on reading Scripture and building godly habits: countless Christians believe that Bible reading is their duty—something holy people do. What many don’t understand is exactly what Scripture really tells us: that meditating on God’s Word can and should delight us, infusing us with heartfelt happiness (see Psalm 1; the world translated “blessed” is asher¸ which means “happy”). David said of God’s words, “More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb” (Psalm 19:10). Throughout the difficulties and joys that 2018 will bring, you’ll find abiding happiness as you go back to God’s Word again and again.

There’s an age-old tradition of Christ-followers who have found their deepest happiness in their Lord. We should eagerly join them and say with English Puritan John Flavel (1627–1691), “Christ [is] the very essence of all delights and pleasures, the very soul and substance of them. As all the rivers are gathered into the ocean . . . so Christ is that ocean in which all true delights and pleasures meet.”

Below are some related articles about pursuing Christ in the coming year you might like to check out:

Marry the Bible This Year

A New Year’s Resolution from Philippians 3: “I Want to Know Christ”

Planning Your New Year and Making God’s Word a Priority

How Can I Stay Motivated in My Relationship with Jesus Christ?

How to Begin a Bible-Reading Habit in 2018

Also, check out Tim Challies’s 2018 Christian Reading Challenge, which will encourage you to read more and to broaden the scope of your reading. (He offers a free download of the challenge graphic you can print to keep yourself on track.)

And if you’re looking for a new daily devotional for the new year, see my books 60 Days of God’s Happiness, Grace, Truth, We Shall See God (with excepts from Charles Spurgeon’s sermons), and Seeing the Unseen.

May your 2018 be filled with the deep, abiding joy and happiness  of knowing Jesus Christ!

Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Unsplash

Randy Alcorn, founder of EPM

Randy Alcorn (@randyalcorn) is the author of over fifty books and the founder and director of Eternal Perspective Ministries