Small Group Studies: FITatudes for the New Year!

By Tonja Ward and Diana Patton

Don’t Start 2011 Until You End 2010 With These 4 Things!

Ready or not 2011 is right around the corner. Soon we’ll be ripping open gifts, eating holiday fare, and enjoying family.   Yet many of us may begin to feel an overwhelming need to do something about our lives; a longing and desire that sounds like: “I have to do better! Get in shape. Live on purpose, set some goals and live charged up…next year!”

Don’t wait!  Do these four things NOW as a gift to you and others:

Forgive at least one person.

Forgiveness benefits our health, personal future, and the livelihood of future generations.  Unforgiveness, as noted by Fred Luskin, Stanford University Professor and author, is linked to illness; such as diabetes, high-blood pressure and depression.  Matthew 6:14 states that “if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.” Christ wants us to forgive others and ourselves too.

Take Action (FITatude #3): Identify persons you need to forgive and write out your forgiveness statements.  Then send it to them expecting nothing in return.

Knock out at least one bad habit

 It’s easy to blame the dad who drank, the family who ate too much, and even McDonald’s for advertising dollar menus for our bad habits! But who’s really responsible for our bad habits? WE ARE! Let’s stop the “blame game!” Taking personal responsibility for our actions makes us feel more confident, refreshed and renewed.

Breaking bad habits is tough.  Paul admitted in Romans 7:18 “… I have the desire to what is good, but I cannot carry it out.”  So like Paul, we must call on Christ for supernatural strength to change.

Take Action (FITatude #2):Write out one bad habit you are ready to work on.  Then pray and ask God for steps you can take to change.

Take three small steps towards eight hours of sleep

Sleep and rest are hidden secrets to wellness.  Most of us are sleep and rest-deprived; hooked on our smartphones, social networks, 24/7 media, and jam packed schedules leaving no room for our needed 8 hours of sleep. God even rested on the 7th day! Let’s establish better sleep and rest patterns.

Take Action (FITatude #8): List your 9-11pm activity.  Now, identify three sleep-inducing activities to get 8 hours of sleep (read a book, take a bath, listen to soft music, shutdown all electronics).

Embrace discipline

We Americans generally lack discipline.  We thrive on a “Fast, Easy, Cheap, Have it Your Way” lifestyle and try to avoid the sometimes necessary “pain” to reach the goals we so desire.   However, Hebrews 12:11 states “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” So, let’s think about this!

Take Action (FITatude #9):How disciplined are you and what areas would you like to establish more discipline?

Need help?  The 9 FITatudes Jump Start Bible Study (www.FITatudes.org) can get you and your small group going.


Watch for our special

SGN Member discount next month!

Tonja W ard and Diana Patton
of
 FITatudes Ministries


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