In years past I might have resolved to spend more time in the gym lifting weights. These days I’m content getting out of bed without needing pain killers. It’s crazy how our goals and objectives change over the years. Things that were important ten years ago aren’t as important now and our expectations more closely resemble our current situations. But still, at this time each year we take inventory of our lives and vow to do better next year through expressed resolutions. We make ‘‘em and we break ‘em!
An attitude of self-improvement is noble. Who among us doesn’t want to be a better person, a better spouse or a better parent. I just wonder if we’re going about it the wrong way. Scripture tells us that if we seek God first above everything else, all these other things will be added as well. In chasing results, we tend to overlook the core for the Christian life, closeness with God. If we become more intentional about seeking God, knowing God, following Christ and living in obedience to his Word, we will become more loving, more patient, more compassionate toward others. The deeper our love for God, the deeper our love for others, thus making us better friends, spouses, parents and servants. Instead of resolving to make all these changes dependent of our will and fortitude, we would be better off to seek him who can change us according to his strength and purpose, a strength much greater than our own.
2022 was a year of change. I saw the passing of my dad in May, and my oldest grandson in October. I saw my health decline more as I wait for a transplant. But I also witnessed God’s grace in every situation. I developed Christian bonds that I relied upon during challenging times. I learned that total reliance on God in every aspect of my life doesn’t make me weak, but rather stronger than I could ever resolve to be on my own. This year I want to be even more intentional about knowing God because I now see that this is the key for me being a better man in all areas of my life. Yes, I’m sure over the next year I’ll have my share of missteps, but I’m confident I’ll finish on the right path. If I might suggest anything for you in 2023, it would be that you wrap all your resolutions up in one simple goal to put God first in everything and to seek to know more of him with all your heart.
Have a blessed, safe and healthy New Year.