January 15, 2007, Enterprise Dispatch
Pastor's Column

Make 2007 a year of opportunities

Pastor Marc Grindle, Church of Christ, Dassel

The new year is always a great time for new opportunities.

Notice I did not say the new year is a great time to set new year’s resolutions. Why? Because I know, as most of you do, that we hardly ever keep these resolutions.

But we will have many opportunities to do good and to better our lives in service to others as God would want. We will have many opportunities to make a difference, not for our pleasure or glory, but for God’s pleasure and glory.

Perhaps the problem with most of our new year’s resolutions lies in the fact that they are often self-centered. They are often about what I want to do and be.

Now, there is nothing necessarily wrong with that. However, the reason we often fail is simply because, with self-centered goals, the only motivation is “me.”

If I want to lose weight so I look good … well, it will not work because I will not look good even if I lose weight.

If I want to pay off one debt just so I can buy something else, what is the motivation?

The only way I will keep these goals or resolutions will be by sheer willpower, and I do not know about you, but I am not very good at this.

I would like to challenge you this year to think a little different. Set your goals and new year’s resolutions according to God’s plan and purpose in your life.

How do we know what that is? Perhaps you need to start by asking.

Perhaps this year needs to be a year of prayer and seeking God’s will and purpose for you. This doesn’t necessarily mean you will need to change your goals … it may simply mean that you will need to change your motives.

For example, this year, I want to lose some weight and I want to exercise more. I do not want to do this for my glory, but I want to be a good steward of the life and body God has given me for His glory. Do you see how the motive and incentive changes?

Do you realize that the Bible never tells me I can do whatever I want to if I set my mind to it? But the Bible does say that I can do anything God wants if I allow His power and strength to work in and through me (Philippians 4:13; Ephesians 3:20).

So, I challenge you to make this year different. Make this year a year not of resolutions, but a year of opportunities.

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