It’s that time of year – Christmas is once again a year away, and it’s time for us to celebrate the new year! I know that many people think it makes no sense to make new year’s resolutions, but I always enjoy making them. Although probably the vast majority of the resolutions we create every single year end up being broken within the month of January, it’s really good to have goals to set for yourself to accomplish. Goals are meant to be a little difficult – they always require effort, and we should not let that dissuade us from making any resolutions. So, I would like for us to take a moment to use the Bible as some guidelines for any resolutions you might make in early 2007. We all need to set our main goal or resolution this next year to serve God better than we did in 2006. Here are a few of the wonderful tips I have found that will definitely be my most important resolutions this next year.
Pray without ceasing – How often do we go through our days without talking to God? It is no wonder we run into obstacles every single day when we try to live through our own wills. When we keep the lines of communication with God constantly open, not only will we find ourselves closer to God but we will be able to hear Him as well. Communication is a two-way street, and hearing is just as important – if not more – as talking. * 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Study, study, study – I cannot express how important it is to study. We can never learn or grow in God without learning about the truths in His Word every day of our lives. So many gems are found in every page of the Bible, and our lives can never be enriched by those gems unless we uncover them ourselves and learn about how God has changed the lives of millions through first-hand accounts penned in His Word. *II Timothy 2:15
Rejoice – Rejoice and be glad in the Lord. This shouldn’t even have to be a resolution for us, but sometimes we need to be reminded that we need to take time to celebrate the joy we have that only comes from the Lord! It’s way too easy for us to be uninspired or even depressed when we think about all of our problems, but we always need to remember that God will never give us more than we can bear. And in fact, every good thing we have God is the One who gave it to us! He deserves our rejoicing every minute we are alive! * Psalm 32:11
Don’t quench the Spirit – It is so important to never let your spiritual flame be burnt. Remember the song, “This Little Light of Mine”? Of course you do – one of the verses says, “Don’t let Satan blow it out!” He alone cannot dim or burn out our flame, and we should always have our lights shining for God. Be on fire for Him every day, and God’s spirit will never be quenched in you! * 1 Thessalonians 5:19
Love God and your neighbor – A simple thought: love God and love everyone around you. It is typically never a difficult task to love God, but sometimes loving your neighbor can be harder to do than to say! We need to love God more and more every day. Never take Him or His blessings for granted. Not only that, but love and help your neighbors. You can always be a blessing to others, and guess what? They can bless you too! * Matthew 22:38-39
As usual, we have only scratched the surface with this list of guidelines for our 2007 New Year’s Resolutions. But I encourage you to take this list and expand it – adapt it to your life and add more resolutions that you want to implement in your every day life. Always remember that faith without works is dead, James tells us in James 2:26. So, let’s put these vital elements into place today and everyday! Happy New Year!