Resolution Or Decision

Posted by Larry Miller on January 1, 2012 under Why | Be the First to Comment

Now is the time so many people feel the necessity to make New Years resolutions. Somewhere between one and six weeks into the new year most of these resolutions are broken. Why is this? I would like to propose a few thoughts for your consideration.

Let’s start with the timing. If some sort of change were really necessary and it was desired strongly enough, why wait until the beginning of a new year. If, for some reason, your doctor tells you to cut boiled artichokes from your diet, those who value our health would cut them out immediately, not wait until the end of the year.

Next we can look at the content of most resolutions. Most tend to revolve around ourselves and things we couldn’t bring ourselves to do any other way. For several years I was a member at a local fitness facility… a gym. Come January, the place would be packed, but by mid February, it would be back to normal. So many wanted to be in better shape, and they took the first step in signing up for a gym membership. Yet, when they found out about the work involved in getting into shape, enthusiasm and commitment faded rapidly.

So, perhaps, to be successful, it takes a resolution that goes beyond ourselves. If living healthier, or improving ourselves intellectually is not enough to get most of us to follow through on our commitment to be a better person there has to be another answer.

Resolutions come apart for two reasons. The first of which we’ve already looked at – the goal we are chasing needs to be bigger than ourselves… something we will extend ourselves and sacrifice for. The other thing is that we are trying to do it by ourselves. Matthew 6:27 (NIV) tells us “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” And this is followed up by “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” (Philippians 4:13 NIV)

Just making a resolution that is not big enough to motivate us, making the wrong resolution, and trying to do it all on our own is a sure recipe for failure. What we need is to give the whole matter of changes – whether personal, social or political some serious thought and prayer. This means we are looking at giving the Father more than just a laundry list of wants, but spending time listening to the response.

Then, forget the resolutions. Make a decision based on what really needs to be done, and your part in it. Make that decision and make it work! A decision, unlike a resolution, is something that is not made lightly, and is not something that is forgotten lightly either.

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