} stickyFooter(); $(window).resize(function(){ stickyFooter(); }); });

What do you want this year?

Feb 3, 2022

With a new lunar year comes the opportunity for optimism, the thoughts of fresh possibilities in the year to come. If you stop to think about it, you cannot help but nurture hopes and maybe even make resolutions for the time ahead. This is the year — the year take that COVID goes away! Run that marathon! Read that book! Watch less Netflix! Watch more Netflix!

What do you want for this year?

Normally, our annual aspirations are all about getting back control of our lives and achieving something worthwhile.

Jonathan Edwards, America’s great 18th-century theologian, did resolutions a little differently. His famous list (written when he was 18) runs to 70 resolutions, each one beginning with a decisive “Resolved”.

Some sound familiar to 21st-century ears. “Resolved, never to lose one moment of time,” or, “Resolved, to live with all my might, while I do live” or, “Resolved, to maintain the strictest temperance in eating and drinking”.

Making wise goals that bring honour
to Jesus and serve those around us
is even better.

Other resolutions cover areas that most of us don’t really think about. “Resolved, after afflictions, to inquire, what I am the better for them”, or “Resolved, always to do what I can towards making, maintaining, establishing and preserving peace.”

Edwards doesn’t mention career progression, physical appearance, fitness goals, holiday destinations, bank balances, or property acquisition. His resolutions were more concerned with his relationships with others and his own character; “Resolved, not only to refrain from an air of dislike, fretfulness, and anger in conversation, but to exhibit an air of love, cheerfulness and benignity.”

Reading Edwards resolutions got me thinking: Do I have the same hopes for the coming year? Do I make relational goals, to be a better spouse, parent, friend, and co-worker?

Edwards was realistic enough to know that he wasn’t likely to keep all his resolutions perfectly. So he prefaces his list with a prayer: “Being sensible that I am unable to do anything without God’s help, I do humbly entreat him by his grace to enable me to keep these Resolutions, so far as they are agreeable to his will, for Christ’s sake.”

Making goals for the coming year is good practice. Making wise goals that bring honour to Jesus and serve those around us is even better.

In this coming lunar year, may God guide and direct you, and bring you peace and joy through his Son Jesus.

 

Alex McCoy
Vicar

Latest stories

Parenting in faith

Parenting in faith

The past few years have been difficult for all of us, but parenting has been especially challenging during the pandemic, with online learning, limited social interaction, increasing amounts of screen time, strained family dynamics, and not to mention an unexpected...

read more
Every Member Ministry

Every Member Ministry

Do you sometimes find yourself comparing yourself with others at church? Someone is better at doing something, so we feel intimidated and inferior; insecurity gets the better of us. Or someone isn’t as good at doing something, so we look down on them; pride rises to...

read more
What your Growth Group Leader wish you knew…

What your Growth Group Leader wish you knew…

Growth Group Leaders are ordinary believers with the same family, work and life pressures as everyone else. We are fallible, we get tired and we are susceptible to complacencies and distractions. We do not know everything about Scripture and do not always have the...

read more

Weekly Email
If you would like to learn more about what’s happening in our community, receive stories, scripture reading, prayer points and catch up on previous sermons, click to subscribe.