Their resolutions were mainly to return borrowed tools. What a thoughtful resolution!
New Years may be the oldest holiday celebrated by mankind but it’s age certainly never gave me strength to adhere to any of the resolutions I made as a young woman. With an abysmal track record for breaking New Year’s resolutions, I decided I was now too mature to attempt this childish endeavor.
Then, a revelation came to me. It was while studying Ross and Stevenson’s Bible interpretation book series that this occurred. Paul’s letter to the Romans illuminates the effect of our choices. Paul tells us that God gives us our own way and our choices affect all of creation. Paul also states that if our choice is sinful, God’s wrath occurs. (Romans 1)
My thoughts, after reading this scripture, were not to make a New Year’s resolution per se, but to change my approach toward making them. The most important question I had was, “What can be done to help preserve God’s creation?” which includes you and me as well as our planet Earth.
The motto of the Daughters of the King, a faith-based Episcopal women’s group, seems to hold the answer. For His sake…
“I am but one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. What I can do, I ought to do. What I ought to do, by the grace of God, I will do. Lord, what will you have me do? Amen.”
This beautiful and simple prayer says it all. “I cannot do everything, but I can do something.” And the vital question, “Lord, what will you have me do?” This gives our resolution depth—a faith based approach to making New Year’s resolutions!
As Christians who care about one another, we are often placed in difficult situations. Sometimes the only avenue left to take when trying to make a difference in ending war or helping others understand the drastic environmental changes ahead is through prayer and writing.
Always, there have been environmentally friendly people. “Already the planet is so damaged and the future is so challenged by its rising human population that the terms of survival will be severe beyond anything we have known in the past,” writes Thomas Berry, ordained Roman Catholic priest, historian and author of “The Dream of the Earth,” 1988.
Fifty-seven years ago, Albert Einstein said, “We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive.” Two thousand years ago, Paul wrote, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good, and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
Whatever your passion is, may it become a resolution that will be guided by God. Prayerfully remember, as you make your New Year’s Resolutions, “I cannot do everything, but I can do something. What can I do, Lord?” Happy New Year and blessed be your resolutions!
©Ann Rains, January, 2007
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