Emily Teterud – Associate Marketing Director
A new year often brings renewed resolutions. There’s something beautiful about what feels like a fresh start when you see January 1 show up on your calendar. I love making lists, so I’ve already mapped out my goals for this year. I went fancy this time and separated them into categories. I’ve got different “health” lists mapped out in the following: financial, physical, professional, relational, and personal. Sometimes I think through what is realistic in a year, what I’ll actually end up doing, and what will just be silly to attempt.
How long do you last with your new year’s resolution goals? Is it depressing to think about? I was all gung-ho about my “no soda” plan until I remembered I have a 12-pack of Dr. Pepper waiting for me when I get home from my break. Whoops. Can’t let that go to waste. We’ll tuck that resolution away for next year.
I started thinking about the idea of setting a year’s worth of goals—being bound to a short timeframe for improvement. In a recent conversation with my uncle, we were discussing the idea of one-year goals as opposed to five-year goals. He said it’s surprising how little you can do in a year compared to focusing on how much you can do in five. That got me thinking about our time frames for goals in general. Do we let that dictate how we perceive God’s “goals” for us? Do you think God has a New Year’s resolution for you? Do you think He’s going to be disappointed when December 31, 2018 hits and you haven’t completed x, y, or z? It’s interesting to think about.
I would say we are so consumed by the concept of time that it can possibly hinder a lot of what God wants to accomplish in each of us. While much can happen in a year, I also think we need to break the mindset of one year as our only hope for making a complete change. I do know God is interested in your entire life, not just what you can do in the next 365 days. So, set your goals! I think there is something realistic and practical about short-term progress and accountability—almost like a bite-sized chunk instead of an overwhelming or abstract timeline. However, don’t be so set on the year that you give up or feel like a failure come 2019 if you haven’t met your expectation.
Without a doubt, this concept is most importantly tied to spiritual goals. I was reading an article from a friend about Bible reading plans and how it’s way more important to build the habit of daily reading instead of getting through the Bible in a year. Again, don’t let the calendar dictate your goals. Rather, use it as a tool to help you build the lifestyle you want to upkeep. I also wonder, there may be some spiritual goals that take longer than a year to accomplish, and we need to be ok with that!
The bottom line is, God is ready and waiting to do some work in your life this new year. (I laugh to myself just picturing Him rolling His eyes playfully and thinking to Himself, “You don’t have to wait until January 1 each time…but let’s go!) The cool thing about His resolutions is the lifetime/eternal guarantee if you’re willing to trust Him and remain faithful. It’s a good thing that He isn’t bound by 2018, or any other year. Let this new year be the start of the growth and transformation in your life. To 2018 and beyond!
I’d love to share with you my life-verse, which I treat as my continual resolution. It’s from Philippians 1:9-11.
9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Happy New Year!