So it is finally here...2009! This is the year everyone in the world is going to change. The year everyone in the world is going to become a better person. The year everyone in the world is going to lose weight, quit smoking, drink less, get out of debt, and help tons of people. Apparently.
People will soon be disappointed with the truth that this year's resolutions are no different than the one's made in 2008 and the many years before. Somewhere along the way the majority of the self-fulfilling promises will be abandoned. The majority of America will remain obese, 23% of Americans will smoke, alcohol will continue to be a problem, most people will have more debt than they can handle, and there will be even more people that find themselves less fortunate than others. With that said, 2009 already shows signs of being a huge success for everyone. Apparently.
The fact that we can become so wrapped up in the idea that we should redefine certain parts of our lifestyle for something as intangible and invisible as a new year completely amazes me. We act as if we have a certain responsibility to greet the new year with proper habits as if he or she would be offended if we did otherwise when in reality, the new year could not care less! The new year resolutions have absolutely nothing to do with the new year, but everything to do with our deep desire to be "good" people.
I say all of this in hopes of portraying how incredibly self-centered we are as a people. We are constantly so wrapped up in what this world tells us we should look like, what we should sound like, how much we should weigh, where we should shop, what we should drive, how much money a person should make to be considered successful, and the list goes on. The idea of a new years resolution is nothing more than another way to set people up for more disappointment in themselves. It is another way of giving someone a reason to think they aren't good enough and it usually tells them that they will never be good enough...that we just can't do it.
The truth is, however, that there is so much more to it than the lies that we are fed. There is something so much bigger than what we have been programmed to believe. Psalm 139:14 says that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. We were created by a God who makes no mistakes. It breaks my heart to see a people that pay so much attention to what the world tells them they need to be, a people that wrap themselves in what the world says they never can be, and a people that completely ignore what God has called them to be... what God has told them they are.
1 Peter 2:9 says, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light." I would like to know what more we need to be told than what God is saying in this verse. We are a chosen people. We are a royal priesthood. We belong to God. We are found in Him. In Him is our identity and in Him alone. We are not found in the desires of this world. We are not found in the ideas of what makes a person successful in this world. We are not found in what looks good, sounds good, smells good, is popular or is not popular. We are simply found in Christ.
If this is the case, (which it clearly is) then my ultimate question is this: Why do we go year after year attempting to become what we will never become when we already have everything it takes to become who we are called to be?! There is absolutely nothing that we can do to change what we have been called by God to be. We are so valuable as we are. You are so valuable as you are. Nothing can make God love us more, nothing can make Him love us less. "This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins." -1 John 4:10
The greatest love died so that we would know love. Therefore, we have all we need. We are made complete in the love of Christ.
So this year, I pray we forget the resolutions. I pray we do not get lost in what the world says we need to be, but that we would find ourselves in awe of everything that God tells us we are. It is time to forget the resolutions and time to spark a revolution. There is truth that needs to be heard and it is way more than anything 2009 can offer us. People need the hope, love, peace, comfort, contentment, and joy that only Christ can offer. Once this is found then I believe we will see a revolution like no other.
The time is now. The time is here. Love is here. Let's not choose to redefine our lifestyle for something as insignificant as a new year, but let's be fully transformed by the love of Christ that remains year after year. 2009 has absolutely nothing to offer this world. Jesus Christ has everything. Be the revolution that He has called you to be... and forget your resolutions.