It’s that time of year again. Or I suppose it is a little past.
At this time, we look back on the past year, evaluating areas where we have dropped the ball and endeavoring to change behaviors for great and lasting change beginning in the coming year. We become inspired by those who have gone before us, we scour articles and books to encourage and assist in our endeavors, and we share our efforts in attempts to gain accountability.
Think about your resolutions, past and present. Did you experience great and lasting change or did you lament at the disappointment of your defeat not far into the forged plan? If we are all honest, I think most often we find ourselves in the latter predicament.
I can’t lie, I kinda hate this time of year. Certainly we all want to improve our behaviors and make these changes to benefit ourselves and our families, but is that all there is? Or is there something better?
Is the basis of our bettering endeavors enough to make great and lasting change? Or are our efforts merely temporal, near-sighted plans often failing due to a lack of proper motivation and execution?
Lose weight and exercise more. Read our Bible through in a year. Get more organized. Learn or hone a skill. There is nothing wrong with these resolutions. But what motivates these resolutions and spurs them to fruition?
Do you want to lose weight and strengthen your exercise regimen to fit into your favorite pair of jeans or do you want to improve your health to enable you to serve the Lord better and longer? To have more time and energy to make consistent, concentrated efforts to train your children in the gospel way and reach others with the great news of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ?
Is your vow to read the Bible through in a calendar year rooted in pride and fueled by self- or peer- given pats on the back? Or a deep longing to know and love the author of that great Book and a desire to bleed the pages of His love and words intended for your heart? These words can fill and fuel you in your serve to Him if you let them. You can check off your daily reading or you can check yourself, wreck yourself, and rebuild again with His goodness and grace invading your life and spilling into the lives of those around you. You may not read all 66 books but you might just change your life and those around you if you refocus this endeavor from a daily chore to an intimate act of joyous devotion with your Life Giver.
Do clean cabinets and uncluttered attics help your flow of you life and family in a way that brings honor and glory to the God who gave you all the things you just pitched? Does your trash become the treasure of someone in need or basement-brought income find its way to a gospel-centered cause? Does your fresh and sparkly home become an inviting place to bring others to share meals and life and the love of Christ? Or just a sigh of relief and a sense of calm as you sip your cup of joe?
Does your new skill merely keep your hands busy or does it open up a place for you in a community that may not be looking for the light of Christ but might just welcome it? Can your freshly acquired hobby be used in a way to further His kingdom? You might be surprised to find out it can!
The awesome thing about shifting the focus of our resolutions is that while we focus on the gospel and the kingdom of Christ, our lives improve, too! In this way, the selfless becomes selfish, and isn’t God just amazing to do that for us? The road to these blessings may be hard and jammed with challenges as the Enemy resolves to wreck our kingdom-focused plans. But if they didn’t scare him, they wouldn’t be worth doing!
Evaluate your resolutions. Change your focus. Make concentrated efforts to live for Christ and advance His kingdom. Chances are, you’ll have the best year ever!
Let us know what your resolutions are and how you plan to see Christ’s name made great in 2016! Women Behind the Scenes is honored to endeavor with you to see this world changed with the gospel!