New Year Changes (aka Resolutions)
Less Us, More God
So, here we are again, post Christmas and looking straight into another year. It's at this time of year that we make these things called resolutions. It really means that the person making the resolution is resolving (definition of resolve: settle or find a solution; decide firmly on a course of action; firm determination to do something) to change something in their lives, whether that be dietary habits, lifestyle choices, time spent on electronic devices…you name it, it's this time of year that we are looking to turn a new leaf heading into the next year. I don't look at this as a bad thing at all, because I feel that we should always be looking to improve in areas of our lives. If we think that we've finally gotten it all right and can then fall into this comfort zone, we are greatly mistaken. The only issue that I take with resolutions is when they don't begin with spending more time with God, because no matter how much resolve we have, we can't do it alone. I take issue with those resolutions because the only way that we can make any real change in life is to give up more of ourselves to God (John 3:30) and allow Him to have more control (decision making). By making this choice in our lives He gives us strength to accomplish the choice that He has for us. Where we see a lot of people fall short is that when they get into a sticky situation and a decision has to be made, they don't call upon God at that time to help them through it. And a lot of times, they already know the correct choice that has to be made, but by not going to God and trying go through it on flesh alone, failure happens. I've spoken with so many who have come out of things like adultery, alcohol and drug addiction, even things like anorexia, and they all give credit to God. All of them can point to the time when they were getting ready to make that next wrong decision again, even when they knew it was wrong, and they finally looked to God and He provided the strength and the way out. I can look to that in my life the very same way. I wasn't addicted to drugs and alcohol, I never strayed from my marriage, and I never experienced an eating disorder, but my life was far from God and I was making wrong decisions everyday…until finally one day in March of 2011, I met Jesus and chose to make Him Lord of my life. That changed everything for me and my wife and our family (my wife and I actually got saved on the same day!). We began making decisions by looking to Jesus first by praying and reading His Word. We have been truly blessed by putting Jesus first in our lives. It hasn't always been easy or happy, but we can truly look and say that He has never left us nor forsaken us through any of it, and there is joy because of it. The awesome part about the change in us is the ripples that even continue to go out today. We have seen changes in so many as they have chosen to give their lives to Jesus. These changes are the true changes that we should be seeking as we begin the new year. It will be because of these changes, the ones that Jesus makes in us, that all the other changes will be possible. So whatever you resolve to change this year, start with seeking Jesus more by reading your Bible, praying, and fasting. Praying you a Joyful New Year (It won't all be happy, but we can experience joy through it all)…until next time, many blessings!