Begin Again: Becoming Who God Intended

Even as we come to the end of the first month of the year, the rest of 2019 stretches out before us. Who will we become this year, and how do we get where God wants us to go? Justin Fung introduces the SPIRES Plan tool and reminds us that love is the framework for our lives. [Mark 12:28-31]

Download an e-version of the SPIRES Plan card here.


Maya Angelou:

Father, Mother, God,
Thank you for your presence
during the hard and mean days.
For then we have you to lean upon.
Thank you for your presence
during the bright and sunny days,
for then we can share that which we have
with those who have less.
And thank you for your presence
during the Holy Days, for then we are able
to celebrate you and our families
and our friends.
For those who have no voice,
we ask you to speak.
For those who feel unworthy,
we ask you to pour your love out
in waterfalls of tenderness.
For those who live in pain,
we ask you to bathe them
in the river of your healing.
For those who are lonely, we ask
you to keep them company.
For those who are depressed,
we ask you to shower upon them
the light of hope.
Dear Creator, You, the borderless
sea of substance, we ask you to give to all the
world that which we need most—Peace.

“I Want to Be Better”, Howard Thurman:

The concern which I lay bare before God today is my need to be better:

I want to be better than I am in my most ordinary day-by-day contacts:

With my friends—

With my family—

With my casual contacts—

With my business relations—

With my associates in work and play.

I want to be better than I am in the responsibilities that are mine:

I am conscious of many petty resentments.

I am conscious of increasing hostility toward certain people.

I am conscious of the effort to be pleasing for effect, not because it is a genuine feeling on my part.

I am conscious of a tendency to shift to other shoulders burdens that are clearly my own.

I want to be better in the quality of my religious experience:

I want to develop an honest and clear prayer life.

I want to develop a sensitiveness to the will of God in my own life.

I want to develop a charitableness toward my fellows that is far greater even than my most exaggerated pretensions.

I want to be better than I am.

I lay bare this need and this desire before God in the quietness of this moment.