When the clock struck midnight a few weeks ago, people around the world declared that it was a new year, and a new them. They declared that they would throw of the chains that held them back the previous year and leap forth into the new year, a beautiful butterfly instead of an awkward caterpillar. A sudden transformation and declaration of freedom, yet it wouldn’t really last. Never does.
I finished the year with the refrain from my church’s youth camp, Camp Earl, in my mind. “Fuel your freedom” was what edged me closer to midnight and I wondered if for a moment I could make a declaration of freedom for 2015. It wasn’t to be, though. I ended the year simply wanting to sleep, because I knew that this new year wouldn’t suddenly bring about perfection in me.
But I did resolve. I resolved to step into that next day knowing that even when my strength wavered, God’s would not. That’s the thing with New Years Resolutions that we Christians make. We make them relying on our own strength, as if we can do anything but for the grace of God. We stand at the edge of a new year and declare that this is the year we live wholly for God – but we share the resolution with Facebook before we share it with the God who would grant us all that we desire for His glory.
I suppose my resolution was a cop out. I resolved that I’d trust God this year – and that trust is based on who He is and not who I am. I’m reminded by my own sin how damn difficult all this is; how easy it would be to decide that this is the year I run a marathon, because running a marathon seems much easier than trusting the God of all some days.
But resolving to trust God is a resolution based in Him, not in me. My trust is only strong because the one I put it in is trustworthy. It’s Him. Not me.
So when your resolution for the new year fades out, and you’re left wondering if perhaps next year you’ll get through the Bible in a year, or perhaps next year you’ll spend an hour straight in prayer each day, or even if you’d not gossip this year… Know that when our resolve wavers, His never does.
What we could never do, God did.
It is finished.