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I made it home from my NYE festivities at 7:45am on this cold, rainy New Year’s Day. ((You can definitely make crazy decisions without being under the influence of substances. My life. This day. Is living proof.))

At 7:45a people are at work, the birds are functioning and the sun is up, however, this day, I wanted 7:45a to seem like 10pm. I wanted it to feel like I hadn’t just celebrated the night away.

I have no curtains in my bedroom but I decided I could make some so I hung my favorite blanket from Nairobi, Kenya over the window to mute the gray sky’s light.

After hanging it, I thought, “Hmm…it kinda looks nice hanging there. I bet I could get a dope silhouette picture!”

So I did.

And then I heard God say, “Come. Listen.”

But it was after 7:45am and I hadn’t slept in forever!

So I got in the bed.

He could speak to me in a dream. I’m sure that’s better anyway.

6 hours later I wake up…with no recalled dreams…fail.

And then I remember the sermon from last night’s New Years Eve service about the importance of putting God first and creating a capacity to receive more of Him.

Oh man. I just ignored God.

Here I go again, making the same mistakes as last year that I specifically determined I didn’t want to repeat again.

And by the end of today, many of you may feel the same defeat in an area you determined would be different in 2015.

You’ll decide to exercise when the the weather is better…or that today is the last day before your eating habits change…or crap, you forgot to start your “Reading Thru the Bible in a Year” Plan and now you’re already a day behind!

You may feel like you’re loosing the game before you’ve even started.

But here’s the beauty of it all:

Every single day is full of new everything…and sometimes you even get a second chance in the very same day!

When I woke up and realized I didn’t receive any deep spiritual revelations during my sleep, my immediate reaction was to condemn myself and feel defeat and failure.

“I should’ve stayed up. What did I miss? Why does He even want to use me when I can’t even do the simple things…” and this pitiful rant went on until I realized I was the one doing all the talking and condemning.

God in all of His graciousness didn’t say, “See, that’s what you get! You’re gonna learn to listen to me!”

Instead when I decided to shut up, He once again said, “Come. Listen.”

Really?! You waited for me?! You’re inviting me back after I literally slept on you?

He is absolutely the God of second, fifth and seventy-second chances.

Now although I’m sure the lesson I received this second prompting is different from what I would’ve gotten had I come to Him the first time, I’m still thankful that He loves me…us…He loves us enough to allow us to try this thing again.

I’m learning to listen the first time. To not hesitate or rationalize or reason when I feel a prompting from God.

It’s often hard to obey instantly for many different reasons, but I’m convinced, if we learn to trust His leading, we will experience far more fulfillment, miracles, and all-around sweet moments, than we could ever cook up ourselves.

So this is a two part encouragement:

1) If you’ve failed already this first day of 2015, do not fret. Just get on track now.

2) Obey and listen the first time…and if you don’t listen on the first time, do it the second time. Choose obedience as many times as you can. In the end, there are no regrets in obedience.

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