The new year has begun. I didn’t make any resolutions for this new year. I never seem to keep them anyway. I also realized that my resolutions had often been about things that matter little instead of what matters most.
Many of my past resolutions have been about temporal things. Like many other people, I have wanted to get fit and lose a few pounds. I have vowed to get organized. I have planned to save more money. None of these things are bad, but I haven’t stuck with them and my life has gone on.
Some of my resolutions have been very prideful and self-centered. They have come from a place of selfishness. I have desired fame, fortune, and power. Sometimes I have even cloaked these desires in a Christian robe to disguise them as noble and righteous. These resolutions were all about me becoming important, and yet I have not become famous, rich or influential.
As I consider these resolutions, I realize that they haven’t made a difference because they weren’t really important. I didn’t stick with them because they are not what mattered most. No matter how hard I would work at them they would never make a big difference. Each one would only bring a temporary benefit.
As I read John 21, I realized that Jesus has a better way. “When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Feed my lambs.”” (John 21:15, ESV) Jesus didn’t ask Peter if he had an influential place to serve Him. He didn’t ask Peter if he had a plan to get rich so he could tithe large sums of money. He didn’t ask Peter if he had a networking plan so he could get his name out there. He said, “Do you love me?”.
My only resolution needs to be to love Jesus better and better. As my love for Him grows, my concern for others will grow. This resolution will have eternal consequences and significance. It won’t make me famous, rich or important in the eyes of the world, for it is a life of sacrifice, humility, and service. This is a life that exalts others. “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” (1 John 3:16, ESV)
Do I love Him? Am I ready to care for His sheep? Yes, this is my new life resolution.