New Year’s Eve isn’t usually an abnormally great time of reflection for me, mainly because I’m constantly reflecting- I’m always thinking over why I did something a certain way, or why God did something a certain way, or what’s to come.
But here we are on New Year’s Eve- when we look back at the old year and try to look ahead at the new one. I was thinking- I don’t know very much that is certainly going to happen in 2010. At first I thought, “No, I know that Dawn Treader is coming out on December 10.” (I’m excited.) But that’s not certain either- the date could definitely move. Things that we have planned or that we think are sure to happen can always be cancelled or missed. All I know is that God loves me and He’s going into this with me, so I try to base any resolutions that I make off of that knowledge.
I typically like to make resolutions as I go along, and not just on New Years’ Eves, but here’s a few ideas I have for the end of 2009/beginning of 2010:
1.) Make a “Gratitude List.” Write down every last thing you’re thankful for (this may take some time- mine has over 200 things on it right now, and I’m not done!). As you write things down, let God know how much you appreciate them.
2.) If you’re a resolution-maker, make a resolution! Someone once told me that one of the most common resolutions, according to statistics, are to “lose weight” or “exercise more.” I challenge you to remember that “physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” (1 Timothy 4:8) Maybe set a few goals for your spiritual life this year- like trying to spend more time in the Word or inviting someone to church. It’s important to remember, though, that our relationship with Christ isn’t just about winning prizes or accomplishing man-made goals, so such goals or resolutions should be focused on growing in one’s relationship with Christ and glorifying Him.
3.) Pick a theme verse for this year. I have a habit- I’m not sure if it’s a bad or a good one- of looking back at how I made it through the past year, then turning to God and saying something along the lines of “Yeah, God! We made it! Bring on the next year and all that comes with it!” Not surprisingly, the “next year” brings a great deal of challenge, and probably quite a few tears, and some frustration, and the “bring it on” attitude is nearly entirely lost. When I do have such an attitude on January 1, however, I usually whip out some Bible verse that’s incredibly encouraging and empowering. Last year, it was from Psalm 27. “I am still confident of this; I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” While that verse encouraged me several times throughout the year, I must admit that I completely forgot that those words were what I had kicked off 2009 for me. I wish I had jotted them down somewhere that I look often (as opposed to the place that I dug them up from to see what exactly it was that I said last year), because I know they would have lifted me up in the rough times that I was kind of expecting despite my “bring it on” attitude.
Regardless of whether you decide to share some of my end-of-year traditions, I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year’s Eve and Day and that God immensely blesses 2010 for all of us. It is my prayer that He will use 2010 to draw many, many people closer to Him. Happy New Year!