December 31, 2016
So many of us use New Year’s Eve and Day to stop and reflect. We look back on the last year or even our whole lives … honestly evaluating and performing some brutal assessments … focusing on our failures … then trying to “fix” our shortcomings. Over the years, we’ve all made so many resolutions. Within a few days or weeks, they are broken. The chances of keeping a resolution for just one month, that’s right … getting to January 31, with your resolve still intact are slim – just 5%-20%! Keeping a resolution for a whole year is less than 1%, virtually unheard of in our society.
Remember, the world we live in is fallen and we are part of that brokenness. In this imperfect world, all our default settings are tainted by sin. Sure, we can delay the inevitable decay that is our destiny. However, trying to “fix” ourselves by ourselves is impossible. It’s like trying to put the pieces of a broken mirror back together in hopes of seeing a true reflection. Here is the bottom line, the take home: only one New Year’s resolution is needed … to develop the Mind of Christ. It’s a resolution to grow closer to God, to yearn for Him, and to glorify Him with your internal heart and mind as well as with your external behavior.
So what is the first step, you ask? Developing the Mind of Christ can’t happen without the Holy Spirit. If you aren’t saved, (often called born again), and haven’t received God’s gift of Jesus as your personal Savior to free you from the penalty for your sins, then click this spiritual basics link. If you are saved, AMEN! The second step is having a strategy to access the power of the Holy Spirit. This is the key to achieving your resolution of growing the Mind of Christ – glorifying God, achieving your God-given potential, and enjoying the peace and fulfillment only Jesus brings.
WITHIN REACH: Disciplines for Real Life Change is our decision-making and growth workshop that covers confession, the armor of God, biblical truths, and a practical strategy to understand and apply the Holy Spirit’s work in the everyday decisions of your life. Having a strategy to access and follow the Holy Spirit continually is vital. Unfortunately, most people go into each day’s battles randomly instead of with an actual strategy. So, defeat is usually inevitable.
To make a resolution is to make a decision with intention and determination … with firmness of mind and purpose. When the Spirit is in you and you are obeying and following Him, He will transform and renew you. The Holy Spirit will give you incredible motivation to follow through with your resolution.
Today, believing in Jesus Christ as your personal Savior is the major way to transform your life right now. If you have accepted Christ as your Savior, the next step is to make the only resolution that can truly make a difference in your life. Choose to develop a strategy that will give you success in moving closer to God and accessing the Holy Spirit to transform your mind and life … now and for eternity. Tomorrow, we will look more closely at transformation. Whether you are intentional about your future or you let it slip randomly through your fingers is your decision, so choose well.
Dear Father God, on this New Year’s Eve, I make the only resolution that counts … to move closer to You by achieving the “Mind of Christ.” In past years, I have defaulted to problem solving through resolutions, always trying to find out what was wrong … and then trying to “fix” things my way. I come to You, Father, and ask for Your grace and collaboration to set me free from all my hurtful, sinful ways. I will view each moment in this New Year and all the years to come as fresh opportunities to draw ever closer to You. I pray in the name of the One you sent to transform me and give me new life, Jesus Christ; and all the children of the world say – AMEN!
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2
to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. Ephesians 4:22-24
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10