Never boast about tomorrow. You don’t know what will happen between now and then. Proverbs 27:1 (GN)
Ah, New Year’s. Most of us do the exact same thing every year. We stay up late and watch the ball drop in Times Square. We wake up on New Year’s Day too tired to function. I’m assuming it was from staying up late to watch the ball drop. Why didn’t we just tivo last year’s ball drop? That was one nice thing about living on the west coast. We could call it a “New Year” at 9 pm Pacific time.
Whether your New Year’s tradition involves black eyed peas or sparkling grape juice of some variety, most of us are drawn toward making New Year’s resolutions. Often we make the same resolutions year after year. It could really be Ground Hog Day. “This year, I’m going to lose weight, get out of debt, read the whole Bible, clean out my garage, enjoy my work more, enjoy my family more, enjoy life more – but wait, I don’t have time to enjoy my life because I’m doing 10 other things.”
If you’ve been part of a health club for any time, you dread January. New memberships skyrocket. You used to walk right in and get on a treadmill. In January, you have to wait in line or get there at 5 am. But, there is hope for long-time gym members: New Year’s resolutions tend to wear off in 6-8 weeks. By Valentine’s Day or shortly thereafter, you get whatever machine you want when you want. The new members will keep paying their dues, but they won’t make it into the gym. This is the secret of health club success. I might start one in my garage if you’re interested (or if I get it cleaned out this year).
If you’re reading the One Year Bible, you’re in big trouble come mid-February. Not only are you running out of steam on your resolutions, but you’re also smack dab in the middle of the book of Leviticus. You’re toast.
Rather than making grandiose goals, why not make flexible goals? If you want to lose weight, then choose to exercise three times a week for 30 minutes and cut out snacking after 7 pm or skip a second helping. (I’ve been doing this for four months and have lost 20 lbs and kept it off).
If you want to read the Bible through, don’t use a daily reading guide. Use a bookmark instead. I’ve tried those daily reading plans. When I would get 4-5 days behind, I would quit. It was too much catching up. God is not grading you on your reading progress. Read what you can when you can, then use a bookmark for next time. Even if you skip a few days or just read a paragraph at a time. If you’d like to get through the whole Bible in less than a year, check out The Bible in 90 Days.
None of us know what’s going to happen tomorrow. We can hope for successes. We can expect a few setbacks. But, it doesn’t have to be the end. Live in today. You can’t change yesterday. There is no guarantee for tomorrow. But, you can seize the day!
What good habit would you like to begin this year? Or what bad habit would you like to forsake? Don’t wait until you have the right gym outfit or a brand new Bible. Just start today. Just start.
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