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Wednesday, January 01, 2020

New Years Resolutions, 2020

It's a tradition, I suppose, to make resolutions at New Years to become a better person, although it's an equal tradition to assume they won't be kept -- our New Years resolutions. Some make them every year and most keep them never. Still, they do it. I'm thinking I'll try a slightly different approach.

In our culture we like the phrase, "Speak truth to power." It means to confront those who hold important positions -- government, business, or religious institutions. It means demanding a moral response to a problem, rather than an expedient, easy, or selfish response. It carries a connotation of risking either the status quo, one's reputation or livelihood, or the wrath of the person one is being confronted. Additionally, there is a principle in some Christian traditions to pray the Psalms back to God. So I'm going to aim for a hybrid, speaking truth to me demanding genuine responses at personal risk of reputation, livelihood, or the wrath of others, and I'm going to do it with Scripture. Given the risk and the content, I will need to keep in mind that "It is God who is at work in you both to will and to do His good pleasure" (Php 2:13). Given that I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh, that I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out, I will not consider these resolutions at an end because at some point I fail to keep them perfectly. So, using the traditional format, "Resolved ...," I'm going to make my own New Years resolutions.

1. Resolved, whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Cor 10:31). Whatever you do.

2. Resolved, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (Matt 22:37). All.

3. Resolved, to love your neighbor as yourself (Matt 22:39).

4. Resolved, to present your body as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship (Rom 12:1).

5. Resolved, to give thanks in all circumstances, to pray without ceasing, to rejoice always (1 Thess 5:16-18).

6. Resolved, to remember at all times it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Php 2:13). Therefore, let your light shine before others in such a way that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven (Matt 5:16).

Next year I'll consider working on patience, perhaps.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm reviewing my last ten years of investments. I would have said I did okay if you asked me yesterday. But in fact I would have done far better just putting everything in a plain vanilla S&P 500 fund, so I am feeling disgusted with my judgment.

The rest of you?