New Year’s Resolutions

January 1, 2011

“I resolve to lose 20 pounds.”
“This year I will face and defeat my arch rival: exercise.”
“In 2011 I will spend more time with my awkward family members.”
“I resolve to not lose my keys, phone or the remote one day of the week.”

Do you make New Year’s resolutions?  According to the Miami Herald 97% of the New Year’s resolutions made by 40-45% of Americans are not fulfilled.  That means that 1.2-1.35% of the population will keep their resolutions this year.  Don’t be too discouraged though, they say around 45% of resolutions are kept by the 6 month mark.

As I look around the internet, it seems like everyone is writing to help make resolution making and keeping easier.  In some ways it feels like there’s a sort of “Who cares why or how it happens, resolutions are just about getting something done!” attitude.  Surely we can look deeper than just making stuff happen.

So, set yourself apart from the other 140 million Americans who are making New Year’s resolutions this year.  Here’s a couple of thoughts as to how you might do that:

Don’t be justified by your resolutions.  Often times I think we make resolutions to justify ourselves, to earn the approval of others and to show we’re valuable.  “Losing the weight will save me from my weight problem and make people like me.”  “Completing the degree will secure a good income and I won’t have to worry about losing my job again.”  Resolve because in Jesus you are already secure, loved and valued not so that you will become secure, loved and valued.

Don’t be make resolutions the point. In the end most New Year’s resolutions just seem to be too small.  Let’s say you resolve to exercise more.  That’s not bad.  That’s great.  But why not take others with you?  Why not have your journey effect others?  Why not wrap your resolution up in a larger story or purpose?  Until you discover what you were created for and resolve in line with that purpose, your resolutions will be too small.

So, what is your New Year’s resolution?

(If you’d like to re-approach the whole idea of good resolutions, I’d encourage you to check out Donald Miller post on an alternative to New Year’s resolutions here)


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