In the current issue of Day by Day with God
Find out more about Day by Day with God January - April 2016:
The Editor writes...
Happy New Year!
Every year January seems to come around more quickly than before, and, as we look ahead, we know that each year will have its own triumphs and challenges. It's a good time to take stock and look back over the year, as well as to make resolutions (which, according to the statistics, just eight per cent of people manage to keep - not to discourage you from making them!).
A little while ago I interviewed diet and fitness expert Rosemary Conley and (rather cheekily) asked her why she had needed to write so many books and make so many DVDs when we all know the secret to losing weight or keeping fit is simply to 'eat less, walk more'. Her answer has stayed with me. She said that we all need encouragement, we all need motivation. It's hard to keep going, to keep doing what we know is right and good for us. Our prayer for you in this season is that you will be encouraged and motivated by these Bible notes to enjoy delving into the Bible a little deeper and that you will know God's presence with you more each day.
The years may bring new things but the same questions can continue to bother us again and again. 'Who am I really? Why am I here? What should I be doing with my life?' Lyndall Bywater takes a look at these very questions in January as we explore some well-known and less well-known characters in the Bible. These folk are indeed game-changers and great heroes of the faith - and it would be easy for us to feel small and useless in comparison - yet the Bible tells us repeatedly that each of us is precious and valued, and that every single one of us has a purpose in our life that will have eternal echoes. A little further through this edition of Day by Day with God Jennifer Rees Larcombe explores how we can restore our hope when it seems lost, studying the wonderful chapters of Jeremiah 30 - 31, and Bridget Plass looks at some of the interesting choices Daniel had to make as a foreigner in a strange land - and how we might learn from the wisdom of his decisions in this new season.
The kingdom of heaven
1 - 9 January
What am I here for?
10 - 23 January
24 - 30 January
Jennifer Rees Larcombe
Be still, and know
31 January - 13 February
Seeing with Jesus' eyes
14 - 27 February
Ephesians: seated, we stand!
28 February - 12 March
13 - 19 March
20 March - 2 April
The church: better together
3 - 16 April
Psalms: poetry and passion
17 - 30 April
Fiona Barnard is a TEFL/ESOL teacher and staff member of Friends International. She works with international students, encouraging local Christians to reach out in friendship and evangelism to make disciples.
Lyndall Bywater is a freelance writer, trainer and consultant in all things relating to prayer. She lives in Coventry with her husband.
Jennifer Rees Larcombe runs Beauty from Ashes, an organisation that supports people adjusting to bereavement and trauma.
Heather Coupland loves working alongside her husband, who is a vicar in Kingston-upon-Thames. Her passions are mums-and-toddlers groups, ministry to women, going on retreat and spending time with her daughter.
Michele Morrison is a passionate believer, excited by what God has done and is doing. A freelance writer, she is published frequently in Woman Alive and has written three books. She moved from California to Scotland when she married, and has four grown children.
Sheila Jacobs is a writer, editor and award-winning author of eleven novels, including Watchers. She has also written non-fiction (Insight into Forgiveness, with Ron Kallmier). Single, she lives in rural north Essex and attends an Elim church, where she is involved in evangelism and leads a house group.
Bridget Plass trained as an actress and has also worked as a secondary-school teacher, a residential social worker and a facilitator of women's groups. With her husband Adrian, she performs as a speaker and entertainer and she has written three books for BRF. Bridget and Adrian have four children.
Bola Adamolekun is a huge fan of dark chocolate and speculative fiction. She loves dancing, playing badminton and being quietly competitive. She is a writer, an artist and a potter. She is also a pioneer curate leading a missional community in west London with Latimer Minster.
Jean Watson is a spiritual director and trustee of a counselling service. Her work has included teaching, editing and writing for children and adults. Her writing has been published in books and magazines and used on radio and TV.
Jill Rattle is a former secondary headteacher who, for some years, was involved in selecting candidates for ordination training and candidates for naval officer training. Now she exercises a ministry to people seeking spiritual direction.