We are quickly coming up on the New Year. There are many traditions associated with this holiday. Most of my family eats black eyed peas for luck. I don’t know if this is a southern tradition of if northerners do this as well. I do know that we do have strange “luck” in my family. My uncle has won a small lottery and came out for my wedding the same year. We got married near Vegas so he stayed there to write the trip off as gambling expenses. He brought money to lose figuring he’d lower his tax burden while having fun gambling. At the end of each night he had to give the money he planned on losing away to who ever happened to be sitting next to him. It wasn’t a huge amount of money each night, a few hundred dollars, but he just couldn’t lose it for trying. I’m not a fan of black eyed peas but it would be worth it if I weren’t already blessed.
Another more popular tradition is the New Year’s Resolution. People typically look back at the previous year, or years, and try to find what would make their life better then resolve to make the changes needed to achieve that better life. Common resolutions include: stop smoking, stop drinking, and lose weight. These are certainly great resolutions but most people fail in short order.
Years ago I made a resolution to stop making New Year’s resolutions. I did it as a joke, but then I actually kept it. Every year since, I have decided to not make a new resolution for New Years. People ask e what my resolution is and I respond that I am not making one because I resolved not to year ago. These people go about making their resolutions and then breaking them within the first month while I keep mine from years ago. This is my unresolution.
Of course, some people do make real life changing resolutions, so good for them. I figure, though, that most people fail because they think that there is something special about New Years that will allow them to make a change they are willing to make. That is the real trick. If someone is willing to make the change they aren’t going to wait until the New Year. A couple of years ago I was pushing 300 lbs. I was more than a little overweight to say the least. I decided I needed to make a change and tried many things only to fail. I prayed and worked out and dieted. Eventually I found something that worked. For me it was the South Beach Diet. I’m now down to just over 200 lbs. I still have 20 lbs I am trying to lose and will get the eventually Lord willing. When I felt that I needed to lose the weight, though, I didn’t say, “I’ll start my diet on New Year’s.” Instead I started that very week. It was in August so my resolve would have certainly waivered by New Year’s.
This is the key. We cannot expect to achieve any real change if we aren’t motivated enough to actually make the change immediately. If we think we need to wait for some special thing then we will never change.
We are called to so much more than what we are. We seem to think that God is going to eventually send an angel or something to spell out his will in our life. After all, that is what he did for all those people in the Bible. In reality, though, those people were already doing the will of God when they were visited by God. The fact is God has revealed His purpose for our lives. He has called us to service and good works. If we begin the process then He will honor that.