By Jack Glover
I’m not certain, but I don’t think I have ever made a New Year’s resolution. Many do make them, but few keep them. It seems that the end of the year causes us to reflect on our accomplishments, and failures, with a desire to change or improve upon our failures. Why is that so? Perhaps it is tradition, or it might be a convenient time, but whatever the reason, we always talk about or make those resolutions.
The years exist because God set that order in creation (Gen. 1:14). Man’s years on the earth also are limited (Psalms 90:10). No man knows when his death will come or the existence of time will end (James 4:13-14; II Pet. 3:10). These scriptures reveal the importance of time and our use of it. Paul emphasizes this further when he encourages us to redeem the time, meaning we only have one chance to use it (Eph. 5:16; Col. 4:5). Obviously, man needs to take account of his life more than at the beginning of the year.
Am I discouraging New Year’s resolutions? No, I am not discouraging our reviewing the different aspects of our life at this time of year, but I am encouraging a more frequent review. Job said, “My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and come to an end without hope.” (Job 7:6). The spirit of man can be separated from the body at any moment, bringing death (James 2:26). Paul issued the warning that we should “examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith (II Cor. 13:5).
The importance of being prepared when we are called from this earth cannot be overemphasized, but our being prepared will be determined by our works while here (II Cor. 5:10). The most important resolution one can make in life is to obey God, but that must be a continuous resolution, not something we think about once a year (Heb. 3:13).
So let each of us make the decision to live a life daily that is based upon God’s instructions. If we give diligence in our study (II Tim. 2:15), and strive to correct our faults as we recognize them, there will be little need for resolutions at the beginning of each year. None of us know if we will have the beginning of another year.
Let us understand as the wise writer Solomon said: “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven” (Ecc. 3:1). Let us use the time God gives us wisely, and give thanks daily to Him for life and the blessings he gives (Eph. 5:20).
Happy New Year!