I want to first start by wishing my friends, family, and followers a very happy new year! Thank you for being so amazing and supportive. I look forward to being part of helping your spiritual growth through-out 2022.
For centuries we have heard people say, “New Year, New Me” only to find that it is a new year but the same you, with the same habits, and the same longing for something more. Each year countless people make new year’s resolutions for various things such as:
- creating healthier habits
- weight loss
- exercising more
- saving money or saving more money
- eating healthier
- getting more sleep
- spiritual growth
The main idea behind a new year’s resolution is to become a better version of ourselves. However, a majority of these resolutions fail before the end of February and in many cases much sooner.
There is a plethora of reasons and excuses as to why these resolutions do not work.
For some people it may be a lack of self-confidence and/or self-control– some could try to change too much too fast, forgetting it is a marathon not a sprint. While others may do too much thinking and not enough doing or they may have had a lack of planning. Some people give up when it gets hard, or if they fall short of their goal.
Looking to become a better you and setting goals is a great thing and we should always be looking for areas in life in which we can grow. However, we do want to be sure that we are striving to become a better version of ourselves that actually lasts.
What if I told you that there is a way to become a better version of yourself and you do not have to do it alone; in fact, there is someone who will help you put in the work and get the lasting changes that brings happiness, peace, joy, and fulfillment.
The type of change that does not leave you longing for something more.
The ultimate new year’s resolution is choosing salvation and edification through Christ. Choosing to lay down the old you completely, picking up your cross, and following the guidance of Jesus Christ. Allowing Him to do all the work within you, while you seek Him first above all else.
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.2 Timothy 3:16-17 NKJV
When we choose Christ, and we are re-born through His grace and salvation, we become new creatures and our old self dies. Christ will put in us a new heart and new healthy desires, He will guide our paths, and help change us through His Word (the Bible) from the inside out.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.2 Corinthians 5:17 NKJV
26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.Ezekiel 36:26 NKJV
Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.
18 “Do not remember the former things,Isaiah 43:18-19 NKJV
Nor consider the things of old.
19 Behold, I will do a new thing,
Now it shall spring forth;
Shall you not know it?
I will even make a road in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert.
When we choose to live our life dedicated to Christ and seek His guidance in all that we do; we can rest assured knowing that Jesus will direct our paths in such a way that we can know that He is working everything out for the good and with Christ ALL things are possible.
How does this help us achieve other goals we have in our life?
When we are focused on Christ and what His Word is speaking into our life, we begin to see truth in who we are and who Christ designed us to be. Christ will help us transform our hearts and minds to the truth in His Word– showing us our true worth, our true purpose, and helping us through every difficulty we face in life.
Christ helps us to produce good fruit in our lives and replace the fruits of the flesh. Fruits that are sustainable, positive, and aid us in becoming the best version of ourselves. These fruits of the spirit come from a relationship with Jesus, the evidence of the Holy Spirit working within us.
19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.Galatians 5:19-26
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
Change is necessary if we want to become the best version of ourselves, but it is not easy. It takes work, dedication, patience, an open heart and mind, and the willingness to acknowledge areas of struggle. All accompanied by the desire to change.
Change starts from within, and we need God’s help all along the way.
There is going to be plenty of shortcomings, missed goals, and other hiccups through-out the journey and these things should be expected. However, it is important to remember during these times they we are NOT alone, God will never leave us or forsake us.
In each struggle there is always a blessing of a lesson to be learned.
In times of weakness, ask God to help give clarity for the situation and guidance to continue moving forward; asking Him to renew your strength. Remember that the reward is far greater than the immediate struggle. Remember, there is no such thing as failure, except quitting. Each failure or shortcoming is merely another step in your ladder to success.
18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.Romans 8:18 NKJV
31 But those who wait on the LordIsaiah 40:31 NKJV
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
I am here to encourage you in all your new year’s resolutions’ and ask you to consider creating only one new year’s resolution this year. To make that resolution to grow or develop your relationship with Jesus Christ.
Make a plan to intentionally be in God’s Word daily, reading scripture and spending alone time with God. Set a goal that you will pray and study His Word for at least five to ten minutes per day. Then pray and ask God to prepare your heart, mind, and soul for all He is about to do in your life.
Lord, we want to thank you for all you do for us daily. For your mercy, love, grace, and direction. God, we ask that as we set goals and seek to press into you more this year, that you will be our strength, comfort, and guiding hand. We pray that you would be with each one of us as we embrace change in our life and seek to become the best version of ourselves. Lord, I lift up each person and ask for Your protection and guidance over every step we take. I pray we would all have open ears, hearts, and minds as You work in us, replacing each fruit from the work of the flesh with fruits from the work of the Holy Spirit. Father, we are thankful that Your plans and ways are higher than ours and we put our hope and trust in You. It is in Jesus mighty name I pray.