New Year’s Resolutions

Posted: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 in Pastoral, Resolutions, Seasonal

Why is it that folk wait until a new year to make determinations/resolutions of how they will “live life differently” in a new year? You have seen the statistics – a relatively low percentage of such resolves come to pass. And so the routine begins anew – with each passing year. I am not against resolutions – and I have read some things from evangelicals that are opposed. Some frame their argument well, others not so much. However, I would remind them to consider that men like Jonathan Edwards did not consider resolutions wrong or misguided. But we do need to consider that these were things that Edwards considered not at the beginning of a new year. In fact, he read his “Resolutions,” (70 of them!) weekly (for 35 years!) as a constant reminder of the spiritual commitments he had made. The only thing that stopped him reading them beyond 35 years was his untimely death from a newly discovered smallpox vaccine.

Our spiritual well-being is of utmost importance. The resolves of Edwards are spiritual resolves – real, practical, spiritual resolves. They remind us of our need to daily reflect upon God and his gospel in our own lives. Jesus commanded of those who are his true disciples, “Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow me – daily,” not monthly or yearly. We are to be always examining ourselves – body and soul – in light of God’s Word. We should resolve to be physically and spiritually fit – for our good and for His glory. We should take care of ourselves physically as it has a bearing on our spiritual walk. So – cont the calories and right the bike. We should be committed to bible intake and prayer; worship and evangelism; giving and going (thanks Don Whitney). In a word, these things, physical and spiritual, require discipline. Hence the reason we make resolves – to focus on discipline.

So, if you made a New Year’s resolution or two, I ask, “How you are doing?” And if you’ve already dropped the ball, don’t wait until next year. Remember Jesus’ word – “daily.” May we all be resolved to grow in Christ – may we be disciplined.

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