Good morning, Five Minute Families. This is the first week of 2023. We hope you had a wonderful time of celebration (or sleep) to ring in the new year! A new year brings new hope, new ideas, and new opportunities. For those listening to us here on the local radio station, we hope you will consider the new idea of volunteering with us as a family in one of the various ways we have available – during a retreat event, working on the facility, or working behind the scenes. If you, your family, your youth group, small group, or civic organization would be interested in helping us help families transform their lives from survival to thriving, please contact us at clearviewretreat.org.
For others listening, we hope you will take the new opportunity to join us for a family camp, marriage retreat, or one of our other program offerings. The calendar is out, and we would love to chat with you about booking an event to build your family’s discipleship strategy and biblical community.
As 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and see, the new has come!” If we are a new creation, then we have new opportunities abounding every. Single. Day. So, let’s look at some Scripture to inspire us in the new opportunities we will see in 2023.
Galatians 6:10 points out how we can focus on the PURPOSE of new opportunities. “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith.” We have a purpose of doing good for all. For ourselves, for our families, for our biblical communities, and more.
Ephesians 5:16-18 shows that we must be willing to take ACTION. The Common English Bible states it this way, “Take advantage of every opportunity because these are evil times.” ‘Take advantage’ means that we must take action; we must be ready to move forward when God shows us the next step He wants our family to take.
If we are taking advantage of opportunities and seeing the purpose of our opportunities as doing good, then Galatians 5:13 falls into better focus. “For you were called to be free, brothers and sisters; only don’t use this freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but serve one another through love.” We must remember that in every new opportunity we must have an attitude of SERVING one another.
Colossians 4:2-6 commands that we must “[d]evote yourselves to prayer; stay alert in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us that God may open a door to us for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains, so that I may make it known as I should. Act wisely toward outsiders, making the most of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should answer each person.” In every new opportunity, a Christ-following family must have an openness to sharing the good news of our salvation in Christ Jesus. (SHARE)
Ecclesiastes 9:10a tells us, “Whatever your hands find to do, do with all your strength.” Five-minute families, we must KEEP MOVING FORWARD. Paul’s ministry is a great illustration of continuing to move forward. The book of Acts follows Paul and his companions on three missionary journeys. Paul thought he was supposed to be a minister to his people the Jews, but God had a different plan. Paul kept moving forward, continually seeking God’s voice as God led Paul to the Gentiles.
As you seek God’s leading for your family, be mindful of all the new opportunities He brings to you. A few opportunities you are supposed to endeavor to do individually, but many will be family opportunities. Remember, that you each have unique and wonderful contributions to make in any family endeavor. Family opportunities can be a little more difficult to plan and a little different in their implementation, but the richness of relationship that you will build within your family and alongside other families is priceless.
Thank you for joining us today, and we ask that if you have enjoyed the Five Minute Family or any event at Clear View Retreat, please share about it with others. We need your help in getting the word out about 2023 events and family opportunities. You can find out more at clearviewretreat.org. Be blessed!