Winter is a good time to recalibrate and refocus. Time to wash off all the busyness I picked up during the fall season and holiday time. Looking out at the sparkling clear days of winter, I can remember those life-giving practices I might have forgotten. Time to break out my winter starter kit.
In the busyness of life, it’s easy to forget how vital worship is. Worship fills us with the life of the Father. This was brought home to me when a friend and health worker who contracted COVID-19 made a video recording of “Great Are You Lord.” A few weeks later, I was struggling with allergies. Not nearly the same intensity as what she had experienced, but I too found myself singing, “It’s Your breath in our lungs.” Not only did my lungs settle, but I settled. Worship has the same effect on me as the way I see my houseplants respond to water. It is absolutely life-giving, and I need to worship God more often — before I get depleted. So, worship is part of my winter starter kit.
Since childhood, I have appreciated the awareness of the Holy Spirit’s presence when taking Communion. I trust God works in mysterious and healing ways at the Communion table. From the time the pandemic started, I began taking Communion at home each morning. Not only did this practice turn my attention to God first thing, but it also helped me search my heart and keep my accounts short. Communion will continue to be an important part of my daily life this year.
I love prayer because I love talking with God. Granted, I’m a better talker than listener, and that’s something to keep working on. But I love interacting with the Creator of the universe throughout the day. Just knowing He is there, and He cares, and He wants to hear my heart. My winter starter kit includes so many kinds of prayer — praying for family, friends and community, pouring out my heart to God, seeking inner healing and transformation, telling God all about my day, growing in relationship by talking with Him, listening for His wisdom and counsel, and just sitting still and quiet with Him. Prayer is as much a breath of life to me as worship is. Prayer realigns me with God. My desire is to continue making prayer and intercession a key part of my life each day this year.
The Word is alive through the presence of the Holy Spirit. God’s Word instructs us, helps us, convicts us, feeds us, and reminds us of His amazing love for us. Whether I’m looking up a passage for understanding, seeking wisdom for a situation, reading a story to build my faith, meditating on a verse, or simply letting God lead me to something He wants to show me, there is a wealth of life to be found in the Bible section of my winter starter kit. I am excited to continue to dive in and explore with Him.
God created us for relationship with Him and with each other. On days when I feel dried out like desert sand, a time of fellowship with my friends revives me. The fruit of the Spirit they share with me is renewing. Their genuineness and the way they hold me accountable reminds me who God made me to be. They help me grow in my faith. My winter starter kit would not be complete without creating time for fellowship.
With all these ingredients in my starter kit, the winter season and the year that is unfolding are looking wonderful indeed. I look forward to exploring, with God, everything He has in store each day. I am thankful for all the ways He provides for us to abide and grow our roots deeply in Him.
Copyright © 2020 by Janet Eriksson
Janet Eriksson is an intercessor, writer, and teacher in Dahlonega, Georgia. She loves conversation with friends, front porch swings, sweet tea, and spending time on lakes and rivers. The author of nine books and editor of many more, Janet blogs and teaches at Adventures with God. She enjoys volunteering with Transformations. Janet received her M. Div. from Asbury Theological Seminary.