Wednesday, February 3, 2010

New Year’s Resolution

“Plans formed long ago with perfect faithfulness”
Isaiah 25:1

It’s a new year and a time for new year’s resolutions. What does that mean? It means we are going to be determined to change something or start something or finish something. We are “resolved” to do it. We are making a decision and we are going to keep it.

Is this a good idea? Should we start the year with some resolutions/plans/aims?
I think plans are an excellent idea because it keeps us focused and ensures we achieve something of importance or value. For example, last year Michelle’s plan was to complete a paper in law and because she made that plan, today she has the result of that. Last year, my Mum decided she was going to learn how to use the computer and this year she has the result.

Isaiah 25:1 is proof that God thinks planning is a good idea too. When God makes a plan, He is faithful to see it fulfilled.

What are some of God’s plans?
- Jesus Christ will come back again
- Ephesians 1:10, “ we will do good works that He has already prepared before hand that we should walk in them”

What’s your plan for this year? What do you want to achieve this year? What does God want you to achieve?

Using the Bible I can think of five areas that are essential to God that are obligations to our Christian walk and now it’s up to us as to how much time we will devote to them this year. God won’t come down out of heaven and force us, we have to decide ourselves and then stick to that decision.

1. Daily reading of the Bible

Mathew 6:11
Give us this day our DAILY bread”.

Bread means Word of God so we must read the Bible every day. How much time will I give/you give to reading the Bible. 10 mins? 20 mins? 30 mins? 60 mins? It is entirely up to you, so long as you do it. If you think you can spare 10 minutes, then do 10 minutes. I think 10 minutes is a good time because it means that it will get done and it is achievable.

2. Prayer

1 Thess 5:17, “Pray without ceasing

How many minutes per day will you give to God, to talk to God. 10 minutes? 20 minutes? 60 minutes? Now ask yourself, when will I do that? At 8am? 8pm? Lunch time? Make a time that you will promise to talk to God everyday. It’s simple.

3. Encourage others

1 Thess 5:11, “Encourage one another

How will I do that? Think of one or two ways you will encourage others and how you might do that on a daily basis. Maybe you will ring each person on the list once per month. Or maybe you will ring one person on the list per day. That’s just five minutes of your time, it’s not much.

4. Be Transformed
Galations 5:19-24, “fruit of the spirit

What areas of your life do you want to change this year and so you have one year to make sure you are a new creation. If I decide I want to have more self-control then I have to make sure that by the end of the year I can see (and others) a marked difference in this area.

5. Be a Witness

Mathew 28:19, “Go and make disciples

Who are you going to share the gospel with this year? Choose one person and make sure that by the end of the year, they know about salvation.

What do YOU want to achieve in your life? What is your aim for your life or for the next 10 or 5 years? Maybe you want to complete a degree or go to South America or buy a new car or win a marathon. What is it that you want for your life? Now you can ask yourself, what steps am I going to take to get there?

For example, if you want to win at the next Olympics then you have the next four years to train. You won’t wait until the year of the Olympics to start preparing, no, you will start now, making steps along the way to prepare for that.

So what is your aim? How are you going to get there? If my aim is to be a missionary in Romania, I might ask myself, what skills do I need for that? What skills would I need that I don’t have yet? How am I going to get those skills? It might require doing some research, asking people for advice or doing some courses. I might even have to do a nursing degree. That would give me a plan for this year.

A good question to ask is, “What skills am I lacking but absolutely require in order to fulfil my dream?”

Then ask yourself what steps can I take this year to gain those skills.
By having an aim and a plan, you can achieve really great things for God and for your life. Without an aim though, we just walk around in circles not really achieving anything.

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