No More Resolutions! Make Commitments (January 6, 2019 - Excerpt)
Happy New Year! Thank God for allowing us to enter another new year. In 2019, we have new opportunities, new hopes, new goals, new victories, new mercies, and even second chances. The old has gone and the new has come! A new year prompts people to make resolutions, most of which they never keep. Although resolutions are made with good intentions, I’m encouraging you not to make resolutions this year. Instead, I want you to make commitments. You might be thinking about what difference there is between a resolution and a commitment. So, let’s take a look.
A resolution is defined as a firm decision to do or not to do something. In essence, a resolution is a solid plan; it is an aim; a decision or intention. A commitment, on the other hand, is defined as the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause or activity. It is a promise to do or not something. A commitment is what transforms a decision or promise into reality. A commitment also makes the difference between success and mediocrity. So, what will you be committed to in 2019?
The history of the children of Israel is well-documented in the Old Testament. Right after they committed to obeying God’s commands upon their exit from Egypt, God gave Moses the 10 Commandments inscribed by God Himself on two tablets of stone. While Moses was receiving God’s commandments and communing with Him on Mt. Sinai for 40 days and nights, the Israelites had already failed in their commitment to God by building and worshipping a molten image. Moses, distraught by the actions of these people, literally destroyed these tablets. But God gave them a second chance, as we see recounted in Deuteronomy 9 and 10. From these events we learn:
OUR FIRST COMMITMENT SHOULD BE TO GOD. In our lives there will always be things/people that can distract us from our real purpose. But we should put first things first, which means God above all else. Realize that it is He who makes our way prosperous and enables us to have good success as we commit to Him/His Word.
GOD'S WILL IS UNCHANGING AND HE KEEPS HIS PROMISES. The two new tables were identical to the first two tables. Man has his own ideas about how to live, which may change from day to day and situation to situation. But God will not alter his standard to suit man's instability. God endeavors to keep before man His unchanging Word/commands, and to help us measure up to it.
YOUR FAILURE DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THE FINAL OUTCOME. Our God is a God of second chances. Moses stood in the gap for his people, pleading with God not to destroy them when He had every reason to do so. God, in His mercy, provided another chance for the Israelites to get on board. As Moses interceded for his people, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us.
Lamentations 3:22 (AMPC) says that, “it is because of the Lord God’s mercies that we are not consumed; we are not destroyed and we are kept alive.” And it goes on to say in verse 23, “They [God’s mercies] are new every morning; [and] Great and beyond measure is Your faithfulness.”
No matter the failures of 2018, God has provided another opportunity, a second chance for you to fulfill His purpose(s) in your life in 2019. I encourage you to take full advantage of this opportunity and wholeheartedly commit yourself to Him today.