New Year’s resolutions require attitude and action

Every January, our local YMCA parking lot extends into the nearby street. So many people resolve to lose weight and exercise, cars fight for spots close to the door. Ironic, isn’t it? Nobody wants to walk those extra steps. Actually, the irony reveals the truth of many members’ hearts – their resolution is limited by their attitude.

We can resolve to do many things, but if our attitudes don’t partner with our plans, we will go nowhere. One definition of resolve means simply to decide. But other definitions go further, including “to change or convert”, and “to bring to a successful conclusion.” A resolution really means much more than mere decision; it is decision coupled with an attitude that results in action leading to success.

Many will resolve to work out at the Y this January, just like every other year. But few will continue past Valentine’s Day. Weak resolve will give way to weak effort. Weak attitudes result in weak actions. The answer? Strengthen your resolve by strengthening your attitude. The rest will take care of itself.

What attitude are we to hold? Philippians 2:5-8 tells us:

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

Jesus modeled the attitude we are to have – one of a humble servant whose focus was continually on God, not self. He voluntarily submitted to the Father, living and dying for His glory. This is true resolve. He didn’t just say He came to serve; He served, even when it cost Him His life.

Have you made any New Year’s resolutions? Are they rooted in humility and obedience to God? Will they bring glory to Him? If the answer to these three is “yes”, then ask yourself this one: Have I merely settled on these intentions in my mind, or fully surrendered to their completion in my heart?

Winning resolutions are God-glorifying and self-sacrificing.

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