But why put off what you’ve discerned is a thing that needs addressing?
Could it be, perhaps, you really don’t want to let go of that thing? Maybe you want to play with that bad habit one last time? < Wink, wink. Nudge, nudge.>
Delaying for any reason is avoidance which means failure is likely your fate.
It’s the Holy Spirit in you nudging
As a Christian the reason you’re even considering making resolutions is because the Holy Spirit in you is nudging you. When the Holy Spirit nudges toward needed changes, you can be assured that God will enable you to carry them out.
Let’s examine this methodically with Scripture:
- Abiding. As a Christian, you live in obedience to God’s word
with the Holy Spirit as your Helper: “If you love me, you will keep my
commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another
Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world
cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know
him, for he dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:15-17, ESV). See also John 16.
- Conforming. As you bend your life to godly living, God works
in you: “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not
only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own
salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both
to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Philippians 2:12-13, ESV).
- Thinking. Your mind is attuned to the things of God: “‘For
who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?’ But we
have the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16, ESV).
- Choosing. You have access to godly wisdom which yields good
choices: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives
generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him” (James 1:5, ESV).
- Doing. You are equipped to do what the Holy Spirit prompts: “I can do all things through him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13, ESV).
- Walking. The Holy Spirit leads you away from evil and toward
holiness: “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the
desires of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16, ESV).
Daily resolve is better than annual resolutions
Since change is a process, it won’t be smooth going. But that’s okay. Because, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases...” (Lamentations 3:22-23, ESV).
Also, “If we confess our sins, [Jesus] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9, ESV).
And since living out the Christian life is an ongoing endeavor, there is no need to wait until the New Year to “begin” again, and again, and again. Every time you fall down, get up. Now!
Ultimately, there is only one resolution you need to make on a moment-by-moment basis, all year, every year:
“I resolve to, as best I can, love and delight in the Lord my God with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my mind, and love my neighbor as myself, right now” (see Matthew 22:34-40).
And if you fail?
Rinse and repeat. As often as needed. No waiting necessary.
How do you feel about New Year’s resolutions? Do you make them? Keep them? Break them? Love them? Hate them? Did you make any? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments!
Note: This is a heavily revised and shortened version of “I resolve to be resolute in avoiding New Year’s resolutions” first posted on December 31, 2015.