If you have ever failed at accomplishing a New Year’s resolution and then felt bad about yourself, then today is the perfect show for you. The New Year always seems to impose a “re-set,” if you will, on our lives, and often it brings with it the expectation of life-altering changes in the form of resolutions which days later have a tendency to usher in feelings of defeat and failure. But that doesn’t have to be and today we will discuss some healthy alternatives to the fateful New Year’s resolution.
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Quotables from the Episode:
- One of the problems with New Year’s resolutions is that they largely depend wholly on us. Too often we exclude God from the picture or the process.
- Resolutions short-circuit the process of discovery of what’s really important to you, or to God. Consider instead, giving yourself a concept to consider and use January to think about why that is appealing to you, and keep in mind the ultimate goal and how you want to achieve that.
- If we focus less on a specific goal, and more on the overarching theme that is driving the resolution, then we can have more grace with ourselves.
- Another problem with setting resolutions is that too often when we achieve those resolutions, we realize it’s “not all that and more.” We often find out that reaching that goal hasn’t fundamentally changed us and we still feel like we have missed out.
- Too often when people mess up and miss our resolution within days or weeks, we settle in a place of failure instead of recognizing God’s grace.
- One alternative to New Year’s resolutions is to focus on one word or theme for the word and embrace the discovery of what God wants to teach us throughout the year. Such words or themes often require us to look beyond our circumstances to see how God will work or change us in the process.
- We go into the New Year with ourselves…we haven’t fundamentally changed, and the turn of the calendar is already imprinted with who you are. So if you haven’t made the changes before, you’ll have to do more than change the calendar to make such changes. But including God in the process lets us ask “God, what is it you want to do in me, through me, and around me?” and partner with Him in that.
- Another alternative to New Year’s resolutions is to believe in, operate in, and appropriate God’s promises (i.e. worry less about pleasing others, and focus more on doing what pleases God).
- Something that we often forget in making our New Year’s resolutions is that we often forget that when Jesus died on the cross, He declared that all those things that are the focus of our resolutions “is finished.” Greed, gluttony, selfishness, procrastination, (fill in the blank________) is finished because we have inside us the same power that raised Christ from the dead. We try to do things in our own strength, but nothing is impossible with God. So if we go into the New Year, recognizing what Christ accomplished for us on the cross, and has already declared what His will is, then when we are focused on His will, He will help us make the necessary changes.
- One way to usher into the New Year is to celebrate the Lord’s Supper, as a way of remembering what Christ did for us, and how we want to change to be more like Him. And we can take this time to offer thanksgiving for all God has done in, and through, and for us this past year.
- May you experience a New Year blessed by Him.
- Colossians 3:23, “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.”
- John 19:30, “When Jesus had tasted it, he said, ‘It is finished!’ Then he bowed his head and released his spirit.”
- Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
- Isaiah 43:19, “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.”
Recommended Resources: (If there are affiliate links in this post, meaning, if you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no extra cost to you)).
- New Year’s Aspirations
- 3 New Years Goals for Getting Back to What Really Matters
- Ask Dr. B: Goals for the New Year
- Breaking Anxiety’s Grip: How to Reclaim the Peace God Promises by Dr. Michelle Bengtson
- Breaking Anxiety’s Grip Free Study Guide
- Hope Prevails: Insights from a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression by Dr. Michelle Bengtson, winner of the Christian Literary Award Reader’s Choice Award
- Hope Prevails Bible Study by Dr. Michelle Bengtson, winner of the Christian Literary Award Reader’s Choice Award
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