I love New Year's Day. We put to rest the year past and get 365 new days full of anticipation and opportunity. While New Year's Day is an artificial man-made restart, it nevertheless serves as a reminder that God is all about newness and second chances. Through Jesus' death on the cross, God graciously provides forgiveness and restoration to repentant hearts. We have the opportunity to move beyond the failures of the Old Year and experience victory in the New Year. We can give thanks for the blessings of the Old Year all the while encouraged that even greater blessings lie ahead in the year to come.
An old adage says, "Aim at nothing and you are sure to hit it every time." I want to share with you some personal spiritual goals I have set for 2011. I pray that you will set some spiritual goals of your own to experience the power of God in your life during 2011.
Resolution #1 – Lose weight.
…let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us… Hebrews 12:1
For 2011, I want God to do a major work in rooting out sinful thoughts, attitudes, and habits that hinder the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. Through daily prayer, I will ask God to reveal my sin to me so that I can confess it and claim His forgiveness. Then, and only then, will I be free to run the race set before me unencumbered.
Resolution #2 – Get in shape.
… exercise yourself toward godliness. 1 Timothy 4:7
I know that I need to be in better physical shape and plan to start working out again, but even more important will be the spiritual exercises I will employ during the year. For my daily Bible readings, I will choose a New Testament book to read each month. I will read through that book everyday for a month to master the truths God has placed in it. I want to spend more of my mornings in prayer, be more faithful to share my faith, and learn to spend more time in solitude to quiet my soul and hear God speak.
Resolution #3 – Get Organized
No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier. 2 Timothy 2:4
The time has come for me to regain control of my time, energy, and space. In 2011, I resolve to spend less time online, emailing, and texting, and more time with things AND PEOPLE that really matter. I want God and my family to have much more of me than I allowed either to have in 2010. Sometimes we let the "good" take precedence over the "best." Time to get my priorities back in order - Jesus, family, church, others, and (lastly) Jim.
I hope God uses this to challenge and inspire you to make some spiritual resolutions for the New Year.