Hey there! How’s everybody? It’s been a real zoo here, but there will be another post about that very soon. Hopefully all y’all had a great Christmas, and a good New Year’s holiday. I imagine everybody’s back to the grind – work, school, whatever. So, take a minute, find a cuppa something (it’s snow and ice here right now!) and take five. So, did y’all make any New Year’s resolutions? What were they? Do you think they will work or help? I’ll tell you what I did this year.
Resolutions for 2016?. I didn’t do resolutions. I didn’t start some self-help stuff, either. I’m not ‘resolving’ to do things I know I won’t actually do, like diet, exercise, etc. I decided not to get caught up in the usual “I oughta do…” self-driven resolutions. Instead, I choose to hope in Jesus’ love and help for the things that need to be fixed in my life. This year I hope to say “yes” to Jesus as often as I can. That’s pretty simple, and it takes the burden off me to pull myself up by my bootstraps and muster up all the will power I have to better myself. I’ve never been good at that, anyway. Everything I’ve managed to ‘accomplish’ – like my sobriety, for instance – has come with lots of help from others and massive doses of grace and mercy from the Lord. It’s pretty simple, I can’t do it by myself. I need help. So, my resolution this year is to accept all the help the Lord wants to give me to be closer to what He wants me to be.
Instead of saying ‘no’ to my favorite foods, or doing the whole ‘no pain, no gain’ thing, I get to say yes. I get to say yes to the gentle drawing of the Holy Spirit to spend a few moments in prayer. I get to say yes to a specific action showing love to those who are hard to love. I can use specific instances to show His love and His mercy, as I say yes to those promptings. I get to say yes to His unfathomable plans for my life and not mine or someone else’s little plans. I get to say yes to walking as closely to Scripture as I can, whenever something touches my heart.
I get to say yes to simply following His lead instead of trying to figure it all out for myself. I get to rest in His love, mercy and care, instead of getting upset about things I can’t control. That’s so much better! I get to say yes to all those little nudges from the Holy Spirit. You know, when He leads you to tell a bit of your story to the lady at the bank, and she ends up needing prayer. Or when He leads you to simply go to sleep instead of fretting and worrying over a situation that isn’t going the way you want it to, and is ‘messing up’ your life – your plans. Or when He leads you to spend a few quiet minutes with Him, and how can you help but worship and love Him at those times? Then everything gets put back into perspective and it’s all good, because He’s in control and we know it!
Instead of saying no to the things I don’t want in my life, and then having to turn around and build in the good things to replace them, I’m taking a proactive approach: I’m saying yes to the good things. That automatically replaces the bad things. Instead of saying no to anger, I simply say yes to showing patience and mercy. Instead of saying no to greed and being miserly, I simply say yes to the nudge to give. Instead of saying no to the desire to criticize and belittle, I say yes to pray for that person instead.
See how that works? It’s the little things that will build a great character. It’s not the huge ‘no’s’ and the huge upheavals that will rearrange things. It’s the quiet little things, hour by hour, that will help us become the person we want to be. Focusing on the positive side of the ‘yes’ has so many benefits, and is soooo much easier! So, my ‘resolution’ is simply to say “YES!” to Jesus.
How about you? Maybe you don’t even have a relationship with Jesus. There’s no better time than right now. Find a pastor or a priest, and just tell them you want to know more about Him and begin a relationship with Him. They will be more than happy to help! They can put you with others who can help you, too! Here’s to a wonderful 2016 with Jesus!