Everybody is making New Years Resolutions – those things we make as a fresh year begins, then don’t do after a month or two. I’m as bad as anyone else (I don’t even remember what I resolved last year), but can’t help making some every year.
Since a few years ago when I read how young Jonathan Edwards made a long list of life resolutions which he would read frequently as reminders, I made a list of my own. I would add more resolutions as lifed happened and I learned more things, regardless of what time of year it was. But that list has since become rather dusty – haven’t even glanced at it in almost a year. It’s a new year, so what a good time to resurrect the whole idea!
I won’t post them all here, but here are a few ramblings that have been hard on my mind this past week. I will turn into resolutions on my list when I figure out how to say it more succinctly!
Humility. There is too little of this in the world – it’s lack in my own life not excepted. Reject one-upmanship. Don’t make people feel inferior to you. If you suspect this happened, do and say things that will remove this.
Build Trust. Lately I’ve been thinking of a concept I heard from Marvin K. Mayers. In our interactions with others, Mayers talks about something called “the prior question of trust”: Is what I’m doing, thinking or saying building trust or undermining trust? Trust is a heavy thing. We all need people in our lives we can trust, but too often they can’t be found, or could be but we don’t know it. I hope for people to trust me – and I be trustworthy enough not to let them down. So this year I hope to build more trust with every person I meet.
Be present. Don’t dwell on the past, which is done, or suffer angst over the imaginary future. Every moment of life is a sacred gift to be kept. But don’t forget the past or ignore the future. Everything in balance!
Read more. That explains itself after looking around this blog a bit. I love to read and even review books here, but I keep starting books without finishing them. I’m in ten or so now. Time to get cracking on this! Many new books await me besides.
Who God is. It’s amazing to me how we believe in God, but lack in seeking to find out more of who he is. This is the Supreme Being here. He’s more intriguing than everyone else on earth combined, because he’s the source of it all. He formed the universe. He made you and me. He invented love, or is love. Fascinating. I’ve got to get to know this Person better.
We’ll see how this goes. What are your New Year’s resolutions?
Some years seem to go by fast. Others slow. This is one of the slow ones for me because so much happened in one year. My senior year of college, graduation, scuttling to Thailand for near three months, back to San Diego to switch apartments, finding jobs, enrolling in seminary… alot of action and first-times. It seems like the long nights working on my senior thesis and final papers was a year ago, but it was just this past April and May. I can’t believe Thailand even happened. God taught me so many things over there. The experience was a good preparation for the future. And spending most of my time in the fall working jobs rather than schoolwork is a new thing this past few months. I’m part-time in school, but it’s still different. Mexico trips, motorbike riding, fried rice, rain, parties, paper-writing, hoe-swinging, English-teaching, test-taking, Thai food, typing, car crash, weddings, joy and pain, late nights and early mornings… What a crazy year. And I’m not the only one. We live crazy lives don’t we?
Plenty of hard times this year too, but I am very, very blessed. God has been faithful, in keeping with his indelible character. I wish I was more faithful to him! Maybe that can be my resolution for the new year. That would make it sort of the same as last years; and the year before and probably every year since I’ve become dedicated to Christ. So, nothing new. By God’s grace maybe I’ll become just a little more faithful next year than I was last year. That would make me happy.
Here’s to 2010! Farewell
I’m not big on new years resolutions; at least how most people use them. It’s always some new thing to do, something they should have been doing all along, like spending more time with family, working out, having fun, etc., but then it falls down after a short time. It seems as though new year resolutions are meant to be broken!
At the same time, I think we should make resolutions to live by all the time come new year or old. A while ago when I was reading a book by John Piper, Don’t Waste Your Life, I came across his discussion of Jonathan Edwards’ resolutions he made as a young man. While I am not a particular fan of Edwards, I was impressed with this: he made a list of resolutions of how he would live his life, the ones Piper quoted having to do with finding satisfaction in God.
I have since made a set of resolutions that I edit and add to occasionally, a little over a page of text now. All of them have something to do with living life for God. What I like about this is that God seems to teach us lessons in life, lessons that are learned over entire seasons of our lives, taking months or years or even decades, and if we have a set of succinct statements of what we are living for and add to it what God has taught us and what He wants from us as time goes on, it can prevent us from forgetting them, and encourage us to put what He teaches us into real life practice.