The power of resolutions
“I’ve been using the ‘Magnify Jesus’ devotional and having the most fulfilling times of prayer… Things had been very dry and prayer was hard work, but that is changing. Seriously, it has been amazing!”
I’ve heard similar reports. Sometimes it seems like heaven is silent and waiting is the order of the day (the month and the year). But in this season Jesus is responding quickly to our efforts!
How? With grace– tangible encouragement and His empowering presence. Why? Not sure, but it seems like more is coming (in our world) which will require more of His grace.
res·o·lu·tion A firm decision to do or not do something
Resolutions start with an idea, a hope of something better. When that hope turns to intention, intention turns to action, action turns to practice and practice turns to habit– voila, something good happens!
Jesus pointed out how people were freaking out about “stuff.” He said it was indicative of a life without God: worried, anxious and pushing too hard…
But instead of saying, “Don’t do that!” He gave us one of life’s greatest resolutions (paraphrased in the Message Version):
“Steep your life in God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.” Matthew 6:33-34
Of course we can read and think “Ok, those are good thoughts, but how does it translate into action, practice and habit?”
We all have to figure it out at some level and make some decisions. Thankfully Jesus is standing right there to offer tangible encouragement and His empowering presence! And He is there to help us back up when we fall.
Like anything of value, spiritual growth doesn’t automatically happen just because we think about it. Resolutions have to move from intentions to actions…
We can start by simply praying and being honest with God. And we can hang out with others who are trying to give their attention to what God is doing. That’s where the power of being part of local church community comes in…
One guy told me “You know I’d like to be part of a local church but my life is too messed up.” Another said “I can’t handle all the hypocrisy.” And still another said “I think I can do it on my own…”
Ok, there are plenty of excuses and some can be valid. But it can’t be worth missing out on the life Jesus has to give!