As we enter into a New Year, some of us are excited, ambitious and filled with expectations for what 2019 may hold for us. Others find themselves a bit more cynical, or as they would say, realistic, in what they anticipate for the New Year. More of the same, wake up each morning, do our best to make it thru the day without making a mess of things, and then falling into bed at night one day closer to the end of life. The latter option is not the reality that God intends for us to experience.
I would like to take a few moments to encourage you to look at the New Year as an opportunity to make a few changes that could help you become “the best version of you”. We need to be realistic and accept the fact that we will never be Peyton Manning, Billy Graham, Martha Stewart, Bill Gates, Lysa Terkeurst or whoever else you may have aspired to become. God is not calling you to be anyone but yourself, however, he is calling you to be the very best version of you possible. He has given you gifts, talents, life experiences, financial resources, and a unique personality for you to use for his kingdom work. When you resolve to use these for his honor, and to be a blessing to others, you find that life is not boring, and you discover a renewed spring in your step, and purpose for each day.
Here are a few suggestions to move towards a better version of you in 2019:
· Resolve to become more self-aware.
o Recognizing and accepting your strengths and weaknesses is the first step towards a better you.
o Ask a few close friends to help you identify an area where you should grow and an area of strength that you can leverage for higher impact in 2019. (choose people that you trust will not hurt you with this vulnerable request)
· Read more!
o You can travel to distant lands, meet amazing and intelligent people, and experience exciting adventures thru the pages of a good book.
o Read the Bible every day. There is a reading thru the Bible in a year plan in the bulletin that can help you stay on track.
· Love people better!
o If we love each other the way God intended, the world will take notice and want to be a part of our “family”.
o Branch out a bit and connect with someone new this year.
You will likely think of some other areas that you want to focus on such as your finances, health, education, etc.
As we all know, the vast majority of people that make resolutions or goals at New Years will have abandoned them by February 1st, however, please do not allow this negative perspective to keep you from your march towards becoming “the best version of you”.
Here are a few ideas to help you experience success in your goals:
· Be specific
· Write them down
· Tell a friend
· Develop a plan for how to accomplish it (a goal without a plan is just wishful thinking)
I wish each of you a happy New Year and I thank you for the influence you have had on my life.