It’s upon us yet again: a new year. 2022 is just around the corner. Let me rephrase that.
2022 is in just several hours.
2021 is finally over, and 2020 is far behind us! I’m going to be honest, my post for the conclusion of 2020 was maybe a bit unfair to the poor year. It was a year full of immense discouragement, but God also blessed me in several ways. As we begin to look beyond 2021, I’m going to say it: 2021 was a tense, not-so-amazing year, but it definitely had it’s pros, and lots of it.
Now enough of that, hehe. Look, even as you read this 2022 nears us! We all know what a new year comes with. New resolutions, hopes, and expectations. The idea of expecting is the theme in this two-part series. Last year I came into 2021 with thoughts more, say, realistic than others. I believed that it was likely ‘21 would be no better than ‘20. And that worked out well for my brain. Now I’m coming into ‘22 with a similar mindset: Things could be worse than this year, things could be better, or things could stay the same; I will try to trust God fully either way. But I still have my plans for this year—which I will talk about tomorrow in part 2—and I’m sure you do too.
We all know how it is with new year resolutions, that they just never turn out. In a Phineas and Ferb episode, Dr. Doofensmirtch fired a machine that made everyone’s new year resolution the same: to obey his every command. After the clock struck 12, he shouted out an order for all of them to follow him as he walked out the door. When he noticed no one was obeying he asked why. One of them said, “well everyone knows no one ever fulfills their resolutions!” XD Funny show, that Phineas and Ferb. Anyway, it’s true that many, if not most, resolutions do not turn out. But some do. Today I want to explain to you several practices that could save your resolutions from flying off with the wind.
Meditate on Each Resolution.
Before you jump into anything, you need to remember to meditate and pray. Sometimes your emotions get stirred up and you forget to consult with your Heavenly Father. He knows best. Ask Him before you make an important decision.
If you get the ‘okay’ from God, then when you start with whatever you’re doing, start slowly. If your resolution is to spend time at the gym and you were planning to go four days a week, start with one day a week. Then once you’ve got that ‘in the bag,’ go two times a week. Then three. Finally, when you know you’re serious about this and you’re confident and strong, go four days a week. Same concept with running goals; writing goals; food goals; etc. Ease into it.
We all need accountability in some areas of our lives. For everyone who has a resolution, you need accountability. If you’re goal is to talk to an unbeliever at school about Christ once a week, no one is going to automatically notice whether you are or aren’t doing it—only Jesus, you, and the person you did, or didn’t, talk to. None of your friends or family are going to automatically know if you did it or not, So you need to personally request that someone make sure you did it. Say it’s your best friend. Tell them your goal, and to make sure you aren’t lying about doing it, make sure they are present when you are witnessing.
If it’s about things more personal, sometimes it’s weird to request a person, even a family member, to keep you accountable. But it is vital. You need an accountability partner or mentor especially if it’s something personal.
If you’re plan is to pray at least ten times a day, do you know how easy it is to lie about that? “Hey, did you remember to pray?” “Yeah.” “Nice!” Easy as that. So you need to be honest about it. And remember, God sees you. He knows if you’re praying or not. You can fool any human, but not God.
Even if God is always watching you, you still do need a physical, visible person to help you. Make sure they’re someone either ahead of the game or struggling with you. Not some passive person who hardly understands your situation at all.
You’re human, therefore imperfect.
As you jump into this new year, remember this: you are human, and therefore you. Are. Not. Perfect. You are not superhuman. You’re just not, and you never will be till you reach Heaven. You may not fully accomplish your resolution, and that’s not good, but it’s okay. Feel me? Just repent to your partner or mentor and to God, and try again.
If you keep failing. . . 1. Maybe you’re going to hard. 2. Maybe you need to be kept more accountable. 3. Maybe you shouldn’t even be doing it. If #1 & 2 have been fixed, maybe it’s #3. If so, pray about it more. Talk to a spiritual mentor about it.
Either way, throughout the highs and lows of this new year, trust in Jesus. He loves you, and not only knows what’s best for you, but wants what’s best for you. May you thrive this year, brother, sister, friend!
Talk to you next year! 😉
With God’s help,
Daniel L. Amador