I’m not sure if I like the idea of setting a New Year’s resolution. I see the value of establishing goals, but I’m not fond of ambitious hype that ends in un-kept vows. Some years I set a resolution; some years I don’t. And I’m sure that most folks are like me, in that, the majority of New Year’s aspirations are related to diet and exercise.
In recent years, I’ve become easily convinced that the area of my life that needs the most attention and adjustment is my spiritual walk. Don’t get me wrong; I still certainly need more discipline in caring for my physical body, but for me, choices regarding food and fitness can become spiritual issues. So, I guess at this point in my life, if, and when, I determine a New Year’s resolution, it will be a promise made between my Creator and me … a goal set with the intent of my becoming more like Christ.
My brother, Jon Paul, challenged our student ministries in this regard several years ago. In a late December Bible study, he led each teen and leader to adopt three spiritual objectives for the new year. He called them the 2006 God Goals. Taped in the back of a falling-a-part, retired Bible is the card he gave us on which I wrote my goals. I look upon them now and wonder how faithful I was in keeping these promises. All three are great spiritual disciplines that I should practice the rest of my life.
So, let me ask you, (let me ask me), … if we are going to set a New Year’s resolution, why not choose for ourselves some type of aim that will grow us in the image of Jesus? Why not make our 2016 resolution a Biblically based ambition?
Let it be known. I’m telling the world. (Not really – just 71 subscribers.) I’m posting now my New Year’s resolution for 2016. What is it that I hope to do? Or what is it that I hope not to do during this upcoming year?
See there … look at what I’m doing. I’m already using words that can lead to failure. Hope to do? Hope not to do? Why don’t I use the word promise or vow? Mercy!
MY 2016 GOD GOAL:
I will strive to live each day by choosing life
as outlined in Deuteronomy 30:19-20.
a.) love God;
b.) do what God says; and
3.) hold fast (glue myself– as rendered in the Hebrew) to Him.
There’s no need for my elaboration; I know what the challenges of these verses mean to me and what they require of me. Implementing these three purposes is how I plan to live each day of 2016. I’m ask the Lord to help me make this coming year a year of my loving, obeying, and cleaving unto Him.
You know the bad part about telling anyone any type of goal is that we are then trapped by accountability. Here’s an example: if you’ve told one gal in your weekly painting group that you’re on a diet, then you are stuck with your Diet Coke at your next painting gathering. That can be a bad part if you’re really craving the sugar-packed frothy coffee. But that shared knowledge of dieting can be good in that your health goal will likely be reached.
The same is true here. As I have shared – and if you choose to share – a spiritual resolution for the upcoming year, accountability is instantly set in place.
May I ask you? May I encourage you, dear friend, to seek the Lord about your New Year’s resolution? Call it what you may – a resolution or a God Goal, but how do you vow to conform to Jesus’s likeness in the coming days?
You are welcome to post your God Goal as a comment below. Posting your commitment is an act of vulnerability, but at the same time, doing so can enlist prayer and support from a community who loves you.
Pray about it. Think about it.
How will 2016 be a year of growing in Christlikeness for you?
What is your spiritual New Year’s resolution?