The Friday Five: 01/03/20

  1. Happy New Year, friend! As I’ve been packing away Christmas decorations (and wrestling my artificial tree back into its box), I’ve been praying for you. Did you catch the radio program on January 1? Nancy shared the key to spiritual growth, the one practice she believes will make “the single greatest difference in your life and mine for the rest of our lives. If you get this,” she says, “not just in your head but in practice, then God will give you what you need to deal with every other area of your life in every other season of your life.” 
  1. We want to be women who are walking forward with purpose. We want our lives to count for You, Lord Jesus,” prayed Jani Ortlund on her podcast, He Restores My Soul, earlier this week. Jani and Heidi Howerton have been talking about how to set lifelong goals and make them actionable this year. The first step of this process they shared is to prayerfully consider questions such as, “Why did God put me in this time in history in this particular country, surrounded by these specific people? God, how do You want to use me for Your kingdom purposes in my lifetime?” (Looking for more questions like these? Check out this post!)
  1. Okay—we want to make changes for the better: “to break patterns of sin, live more faithfully, and grow in godliness. And yet, our battle with sin remains, and our enemy works tirelessly to distract, discourage, or weigh us down in that pursuit.” Legalism can turn our “joyful, Spirit-filled walk with Christ into a joyless, calculated pursuit of goodness in our own strength and for our own glory,” but there’s often a more subtle danger: we can neglect spiritual effort out of the fear of legalism. Thank you, God, for grace! In this post, Sarah Walton shares how we can pursue goals under the gospel banner of true freedom
  1. I’ve been listening to Ben Stuart’s messages about dating since his days as the executive director for Breakaway Ministries at Texas A&M—so when I saw his name pop up in the FamilyLife Today feed, I couldn’t wait to share the link with you! In this episode, Stuart describes his dating missteps, how he found a faith community where he belonged and, eventually, how he found love. Listen to this program, and if you enjoy his teaching as much as I do, download the whole series! 
  1. When I first walked inside Revive Our Hearts’ headquarters, I was amazed at the size of the staff! It didn’t make sense that such a small group of people could possibly be able to impact the country (and the world!) on such a tremendous scale—apart from God. He has done more than we could ask or imagine, especially in the last year! As you watch this recap video of all that the Lord accomplished in 2019, join us in thanking Him for His faithfulness and for giving us a new year to seek Him! We can't wait to see what God will do in 2020!

Listings here do not imply endorsement of all writings and positions of the individuals mentioned.

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About the Author

Katie Laitkep

Katie Laitkep

Katie Laitkep was working as a hospital teacher when God called her to join Revive Our Hearts as a staff writer. She serves remotely from Texas, where God sustains her through saltwater beaches, Mexican food, and Scripture. Her website,, is a record of the Lord’s faithfulness in chronic illness, for even in suffering, He is good.

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