Long resolution lists, image boards, goal posters, this is the time of year when everyone starts looking forward tot he next and thinking about what they would like to do differently. My pastor was talking about Rosh Hashonna and the different ways to approach the New Year and It made me so grateful to still be standing.
I confess – I don’t do resolutions. They never work. In fact, if there is anything I want to be sure NOT to do, I should put it in a resolution: Eat unhealthier, exercise less… hmm maybe I’m on to something!
The idea has taken hold and now I am possessed. It would be so easy to clean house, sweep all the mess of 2018 out the door and slam it shut with my New Year’s Resolutions List, but then I might miss the blessing tangled in the mess. The blessing is that the mess did not engulf me, I’m not being swept away with it. The blessing is really being able to look back and enumerate all the ways in which God kept me standing in the midst of the storm. Like a difficult climb up a wooded mountain, you can’t really see how far you’ve come until you get to the top and look down to where you started – then you are amazed.
So this year, I will be doing something different to mark the New Year. I’m going to focus on the past. I’m going to write down all of the things I am sorry for, how I messed up, on little post-it sized notes – fold them and put them in a coffee can. Then I’m going to write down all of the struggles of the past year and compare them to where I am now: something like this: January 1, 2018, = crawling on all fours to get around ~ December 31, 2018, = walking like a homo sapien!) Then I am going to thank God for keeping me standing through it all and burn all the contents of the coffee can because, despite my inability to measure up to God’s standards, He never let me down.
Happy New Year!!
Isaiah 40:30-31 New International Version (NIV)
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.