A brand new year! Time to come up with some New Year’s resolutions. Time to make a list of things we want to accomplish in the coming year. It’s the perfect time to try new things. Make some goals to be reached. Right?
While there’s nothing wrong with any of these, there’s still something that nags at my soul when my calendar starts to fill up. We can mindlessly come up with some resolutions that sound really good. We can fill our time with a lot of good things.
Good things for ourselves.
Good things for our kids.
Good things for our family.
But I’ve often found myself doing so many good things that I don’t do anything well. I come up short. I spread myself so thin that I’m no good to anyone.
Maybe I’m qualified to do five things really well, yet when I try to cram them all into a short window of time, those five things crumble, making me feel as if I’m barely treading water.
But shouldn’t we say yes to every good thing that comes our way?
Meeting friends for lunch? That’s good!
Exercising to stay in shape? That’s good!
Volunteering at your child’s school? That’s good!
Leading a Bible study? That’s good!
Working part-time to earn a little extra money? That’s good!
Signing your child up for their favorite sport? That’s good!
Yes. Each and every one of these are good things. Nobody would argue that they aren’t.
But if you say yes to every single good thing that comes your way, at some point it will leave you feeling frustrated. Overwhelmed. Frazzled. Stressed to the max.
And before you know it, your resolutions and good intentions turn into disappointments and failures.
When we run from one good thing to the next at a break-neck speed, we often miss out on the rest God longs for us to embrace.
Resting in his presence. Resting in his peace. Resting in his purpose.
Instead of saying yes to everything, we could stop and pray before we answer. Asking God for wisdom and discernment.
Maybe this good thing would be better if I embraced it later, instead of now.
Maybe I should say no to this good thing so that someone else will have the opportunity to say yes.
Maybe this good thing is really my plan instead of God’s.
Sometimes I’m so busy saying yes to the good things that I don’t make time to pray and ask God what is best.
As this new year begins, here’s a challenge:
Instead of asking God to bless a long list of our hopeful accomplishments, let’s stop and humbly approach Him.
Instead of resolutions, let’s humbly ask Him what is His best for us.
God, what is your plan for me this year? Are there things I need to let go of? What new steps do you want me to take? Help me rest in your presence, so I can know what’s best. Your best.
I pray you will embrace this new year with a sense of peace and purpose.
Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Blessings to you, dear friends!
Check out my devotional book, Embracing The Race.
6 thoughts on “Why My New Year’s Resolutions Often Fail”
When my kids were little I found myself way to busy. I said yes to leading bible studies, prayer groups, kids weekly programs at church, a new sport each season all while home schooling. Too much. As they’ve grown into adults, life calmed down a lot. When I lost my dad I stopped all things completely. Now 4 years in it’s time to say yes again to some good things, BUT I needed your reminder to pray first. I hope I’ve learned my lesson, but ya never know.
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Thanks for sharing your experience! We all can be challenged with keeping balance in our life. Blessings to you!
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There is so much value and wisdom in these words Lisa. I have been always been too much of a “yes person”, and all good things. My 1st year running I ended up injured, because I ended up saying yes to so many runners who invited my out for a run and my body just was not used to it.
We are human and we do need our rest, and I am slowly learning the value. Thank you for sharing Lisa! Blessings in 2018! 🙂
Yes, it really is hard to say No to things we want to do. But we still learn wisdom from our mistakes and God continues to pour out his grace. Blessings to you!
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Hi, Lisa!!! I used to make New Year’s resolutions all the time. When I was a kid… a teen… even in my earlier years of being an adult. Then I switched to only making ONE resolution. Kept it simple that way. One year, my single resolution was to simply eat more vegetables. Now… I don’t even do that. But I do kind of make some resolutions. I call them REVERSE New Year’s Resolutions. I write a journal entry in the past tense of all the things I want to do or accomplish as though they have already happened. It’s awesome! You can read my blog post about it here: https://christiewrightwild.blogspot.com/2017/01/how-to-write-reverse-new-years.html
Thanks for stopping by! I like your ideas you shared. Blessings to you!😀