For Christians, if God is central in the New Year’s resolution, it has a better chance for success. God gave human beings free will, and He never oversteps that freedom to make choices. God’s Word certainly has made clear which choices are better than others, but God never forces His people to comply.
Choosing to do the will of God is always a right choice and, of course, has God’s endorsement. God’s favor and blessings should be incentive enough to pursue Godly goals. God’s Word is filled with what is right and good, therefore reading and learning the Bible is a good place to start and a good place to stay.
The Christian’s first priority should be making time or more time to read and study the Word of God. This may necessitate getting up an hour earlier, or maybe less TV time. One will always make time for whatever or whoever is loved. Jesus said, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39)
This is a good place to start for any believer. Goals set in this light would include spending more time in personal devotion to God, Bible reading and time in prayer. This time is usually best first thing in the day, before all the demands and activities of daily life make quiet time with God impossible.
Other resolutions might include memorizing verses of Scripture, perhaps one a day or one a week. Pick positive and encouraging passages, and inspirational promises of God. Prayer time should be purposeful, perhaps with a list of people or situations that need prayer. One might even have a prayer journal, jotting down how and when God answers the prayers.
Financial giving is certainly a solid Biblical principle which includes tithing and special additional offerings for different church needs or perhaps for the support of missions work. The only way to improve on the principle of tithing is to increase the proportion of the amount. It may be that in order to give more, the resolution might include spending less on sodas, or coffees or movie rentals. These kinds of resolutions are blessed decisions. If one has more time than money to offer, perhaps volunteer in the children’s department at church, or make a plan to visit the sick or elderly. Maybe it’s time to restore a damaged relationship with a family member or an old friend.
Personal resolutions might include watching less TV, spending more time with spouse or children, such as playing games or going out to sports events or picnics in the park. Resolutions might include planning dinner parties for friends and neighbors, becoming better organized at home, in the office or garage, or maybe getting additional education on a subject by taking a community college course or online class. Better financial management is an important goal, which could include renegotiating insurance policies, utility expenses, reevaluating food costs and auto usage, and perhaps making a savings plan for a family vacation.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 says, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might,” and similarly, Colossians 3:23 and 24 state, “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.” Loving God first with heart, soul and mind includes and can be expressed in having an enthusiasm and exuberance for many things in life. God’s desire is for His people to live life to the fullest and to flourish, having good health and prosperity, among many other blessings. Resolutions and goals selected with love for God and done thoughtfully in prayer can be life enhancing and enriching.