New Year is usually the time to make New Year’s Resolutions or to establish goals for 2019. A new year often gives us the feeling of a fresh start and a new beginning. The Bible doesn’t specifically speak for or against the idea of New Year’s resolution.
The practice of making New Year’s resolution is traced back to the ancient Babylonians. However, it is not an unbiblical idea for Christians to make New Year’s resolutions because Johnathan Edwards himself made his own resolutions.
Therefore, if a Christian decides to make a New Year’s resolution, what kind of resolution should he or she make and how he or she could accomplish it?
The Process of Successful New Year’s Resolution:
Determine Your Dream
A dream that is written down is a goal. People who write down their goals are more likely to accomplish their goals than people who merely think or talk about them. For example, my goal for 2019 is to read three chapters of the New Testament per day.
Then I write it down on a sticky note and put it on my desk so that every time I sit down on my desk, I will be reminded of my goal. Moreover, I also set financial goals, which is to cut down my expenses and save more.
Create a Plan
Proper planning prevents poor performance. The key to success is to come up with a plan. Proverbs Chapter 16, Verse 9 says, “in their hearts, humans plan their course.” The Bible encourages us to have a plan that would help us accomplish our goals. A proper plan is the road map to your destination. Antoine de Saint-Exupery once said, “a goal without a plan is just a wish.”
To accomplish my Bible reading goal, I plan to set aside thirty minutes of every morning to read my Bible. To achieve my financial goal, I plan to cut down my trips to the coffee shop every week.
Act on It
After writing down your goal and making plans, now it is time to act. Your goal is accomplished only if you start to act according to your plan. Success is when you act on what you have already planned.
Trust God during the Process
Finally, to accomplish your New Year’s resolutions, you need to trust God during the process. Proverbs Chapter 16, verse 9 says, “in their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”
In other words, a man could mediate and prepare his plans with the utmost solicitude, but the result rests with God whether He shall carry them to completion or not. Proverbs Chapter 20, Verse 24 says, “a person’s step is directed by the Lord.” Since God is the one that determines the result of our effort, we must trust Him during the process.
You are not going to accomplish your resolution overnight. It will take a lot of time, energy, and sacrifice to achieve your success; however, God shall control the outcome of our effort. Therefore, to complete your goals, you must simultaneously act according to your plan and trust God during the process.
To achieve your goals for 2019, you must first write down your dream, next create a plan, then act on it, and finally trust God during the process. In Philippians Chapter 4 Verse 13, Paul writes, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” If you rely on the strength of the Lord, you have a better chance of success. John Chapter 15, Verse 5, Jesus declares, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
The key to successful resolution is to rely on the Lord and trust that God’s will for your life will be fulfilled and that He will enable you to fulfil His will for your life. Psalm Chapter 37, Verse 5 says, "Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him, and He will act."
Dat Nguyen is a student from Vietnam at the Master’s Seminary and a member of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles, California. He desires to be a faithful minister of the Word of God. Dat Nguyen loves playing basketball, American football and watching movies.