Resolutions aren’t for me. They just don’t work so I gave them up many years ago. Instead I use the flip of the calendar to assess where I am and where I want to go. This is also a good practice for a family to do together. Often a visual is helpful, maybe even a mind map. Earlier last year we made a list together here on one of my blogs of things we have learned in our lives, a positive list. Now is also a good time to add to that list. What did you learn in 2021?
New Year’s resolutions don’t work for many folks because we tend to place a time tag on them. So when we haven’t reached the level we’ve carved out for ourselves by a certain date, we throw up our hands in despair and simply give up. An assessment on the other hand, has no best before date. There is no expiration. We are simply taking a realistic look at what we would like to change about ourselves, or things we could do better. From that perspective, assessments are used as a tool for learning as they usually prompt us to research something that’s not working as well as it should or could. A yearly evaluation serves as a reminder to stay on track, to prioritize what is working and give up what’s not. It also clears my vision so that I can be more mindful of how precious time is. Resolutions don’t take any of these points into account.
A new year is also an opportunity to ask God to give you a word for the next 12 months, a word that is, and will be, meaningful for you as the months pass. After all, he knows what the future holds and we don’t. God’s already there in our future. My word last year was “walk”, not run or jog or stride, but “walk”. I can’t tell you just how significant it became to me and how it amazingly showed up all over the place as the months rolled by. It led me to delve into my Bible more, enhancing and enriching my “walk”. It took me deeper.
My word this year is “begin”. I didn’t find it. My word found me.
At almost 70 years of age I want to “begin” because he has already shown me that whatever I thought I knew about Him is barely a scratch on the surface. I want to begin to create something new…or renew something I had dropped long ago. Lord, come and do a new thing!
“He who began a good work in you (me) will carry it on to completion… Philippians 1:6
I will begin to praise him like I never have before.
I will begin to be more generous.
I will begin to be more patient.
I will begin to share God’s love more with people I meet.
I will begin to restart my book.
I will begin to listen to others more so that I may learn.
The implication of begin is that this is new territory, never yet ploughed or planted. As I ponder the word begin, I start to realize how very little I truly comprehend about generosity, patience, love…. God is showing me that anything I thought I knew was nothing. It’s very humbling. My human perspective cannot compare to His yet I believe he is going to show me new land with deeper, richer soil. I cannot cling to the old if I want Him to make all things new. If I want to grow I must embrace, I must begin with a fresh start, a clean slate.
“Though your beginning was insignificant, yet your end will increase greatly.” Job 8:7 I believe this can be a promise especially for seniors!
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” Proverbs 9:10
“The Lord possessed me at the beginning of His way, before his works of old. From everlasting I was established, from the beginning, from the earliest of times of the earth.” Proverbs 8:22-23
“In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word (Jesus) was with God, and the Word (Jesus) was God. He was in the beginning with God.” John 1: 1-2 God is the initiator of ALL. His Word, Jesus, the logos or the message, was the way God restored us to himself. How can I ever begin to grasp that type of Love? It will take a lifetime to begin to understand.
“You Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth. And the heavens are the
works of your hands.” Hebrews 1:10
“This month shall be the beginning of months for you…” Exodus 12:2
“I am the alpha and the omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” Revelation 22:13
“Forget the former things, do not dwell on the past. See I am doing a new
thing!” Isaiah 43:18-19
I can’t wait to begin!