Have you set any goals yet for 2014? I’m actually still working on mine, taking some time to re-calibrate and pray over them, before sharing them publicly. But in the meantime, here are 5 resolutions that we should all stay focused on in the next 12 months.
1. Delight in His Word
Spend time reading, studying, and memorizing Scripture this year. Internalize its truth. Post it around your house so you can meditate on it throughout each day. Think on it when you rise up in the morning, and lay down in the evening. Let it saturate your every thought!
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.” Psalm 1:1-2
2. Walk in His Ways
Actively seek His ways — don’t just ask Him to bless your ways! Because God’s ways lead to eternal, abundant life — our ways are formed in lust, continued in sin, and end in death. And you can’t choose both. Listen to Him, or listen to yourself. Obey Him, or do what seems right in your own eyes. Walk in His ways, or reject His ways.
“If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I command you today, by loving the Lord your God, by walking in his ways, and by keeping his commandments and his statutes and his rules, then you shall live and multiply, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to take possession of it.” Deuteronomy 30:16
3. Give Thanks to the Lord
Purpose in your heart to be more grateful this year. Pray that God would open your eyes to all the wonderful ways He blesses you every day. Dedicate a few minutes each day to list some things you’re thankful for, and praise Him for those things. After all, He is the Creator and Sustainer of everything, and the source of all that is good!
“Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!” 1 Chronicles 16:34
4. Tell of His Wondrous Works
Share with others how God is blessing and teaching you! Testify of His goodness and love. Proclaim His faithfulness and providence. Write it, speak it, sing it, draw it… use the skills and talents God has given you, to point people back to Him. Let people know who your God is!
“Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!” 1 Chronicles 16:8-10
5. Seek His Presence Continually
It’s a daily choice to seek God — just as it’s a daily choice to delight, walk, praise, and testify. It’s a choice that is applied thought-by-thought and action-by-action. Choose to seek Him in this moment, and in the next, and in the next… and soon you will be delighting in Him every morning, walking with Him every day, praising Him every evening, and testifying of His greatness whenever you can.
“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!” Psalm 105:4
Every single one of these things is a CHOICE, a daily decision to do or not do. It’s a moment-by-moment choice between pleasing yourself and pleasing your God, between choosing what will have an eternal impact versus what will temporarily gratify your flesh.
If you’re still looking for a “word for the year,” why not consider the word “choose”? Every day we make hundreds of choices to listen or ignore, obey or disobey, worship or whine, praise or complain. Every moment we are choosing to follow God or follow some idol — whether that idol be self, or an activity, or an achievement, or even another person.
Now therefore fear the Lord and
serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness.
And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord,
choose this day whom you will serve.
But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
The Lord our God we will serve, and his voice we will obey.