At the start of a new year, everyone talks about resolutions. Some people make a massive list. Some make only a handful of resolutions. Some don’t even bother because they just know they won’t be able to keep them anyway.
Here are my thoughts on New Year’s resolutions:
1) If you make one, you owe yourself the respect to keep it. Backing out of your promise like that sets you up for more failed promises and disappointments. So go ahead and make one, or a few, but keep them.
2) If you need to make resolutions, make just 1 or 2 and stick with those instead of making lots and failing to keep any.
3) Whether you make resolutions or not, if you are a Christian, your life should always be under review. Seek ways to change what is poor or wrong in your life and grow in your commitments and relationships with God and other people.
4) Don’t let New Year’s be the only time for being resolved to become the person God wants you to be. That should be a daily resolution.
Instead of just making resolutions, be resolved. Psalm 108:1 says, “I am determined, O God! I will sing and praise you with my whole heart” (Psalm 108:1, NET).
What is it to be resolved? Psalm 108:1 uses the word “determined” (NET) or “steadfast” (NIV). When you are resolved, you are determined to do what you have said you will do. The outcome of making a resolution should be that you prove to be steadfast, that is, you prove to be true to your word. Resolve is a quality closely connected with commitment and trust. When you resolve to do something, you are making a commitment (sometimes to yourself and sometimes to others or God). Whether or not you keep that commitment will determine how well others can trust you and trust what you say.
In Psalm 108, David calls for God to help him (v.6) and describes the need he had for God to help him and be with him during a time when the nation of Israel was facing enemies on all sides (v.7-12). He ends the psalm with a statement of trust – “With God we will gain the victory . . .” (v.13). David was facing some uncertainty in his life. But look how he starts the song. “I am determined, O God! I will sing and praise you with my whole heart” (v.1). Though facing uncertainty, David made his resolution first, and he planned to stick with it. He was resolved to continue to praise God through it all. Look at verse 4: “For great is your love, higher than the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.” Because God’s love and faithfulness are never failing, David kept his confidence in God to be with him even through the uncertainties in his life. His resolve was to trust God and praise Him even when life was tough.
What a challenge for us as well! Because God's love and faithfulness are never failing, we can have confidence in Him to be with us through whatever comes our way. Have the resolve to praise God for who He is even when life is tough. Be resolved to trust God. Be resolved to praise God with your life.