Is it possible to make a resolution this year and truly keep it?
Absolutely! And now that we have righted our wrong resolutions, we should eliminate most of them. That’s right. Let’s reduce our resolution list down to one. Let’s choose that single area where we most desire to grow in godliness.
But there are twenty ways I should be growing right now, you might protest.
That’s true for all of us. But what’s also true is that we can’t change in every area all at once.
Author and speaker David Powlison makes this insightful observation:
“We are simple people. You can’t remember ten things at once. Invariably, if you could remember just ONE true thing…you’d be different. Connect one bit of Scripture to one bit of life…. Apply one relevant thing from our Redeemer to one significant scene in your story. Bring one bit of the Bible to one bit of your life….You can’t deal with it all at once. Scripture never does…. Life goes one step at a time.”
So we see that the mark of true spirituality doesn’t require ten giant steps forward. One step at a time is sufficient. In fact, you could argue that choosing one area for growth in godliness is an expression of humility. It’s a humble acknowledgement of our serious limitations as “simple people”.
And what’s more, growth in one area almost always affects every other area of our lives. So rather than lament about the twenty ways we need to grow in godliness, let’s be encouraged that as we isolate just one and devote ourselves to change in that area, by the grace of God it will affect the other nineteen.
Oh, and one more thing. We need to make sure our resolution is specific. “Overcome anger” is too vague. However, if we choose to take the next 30 days to memorize and meditate on Eph. 4:29 – 5:2, list the circumstances that tempt us to anger and pray about and plan how to respond humbly at those times – now that would be a detailed resolution!