company! I have to say I’m fighting the urge because year after year I fail to keep them. I remember last year I decided to eat healthier, have a meal plan with an organized grocery list for my family, keep an exercise routine, read the Bible through in one year…Yeah, right! None of it really happened the way I planned it. So should I give up on making these plans?
Thousands of people make plans in the beginning of the New Year about new diets, new
exercise plans, more discipline etc. Even if you don’t make it verbal or don’t post it on your fridge, in your mind you make those plans, because a new year seems to be the perfect time to have a new beginning. The perfect time to start something new.
But what will I actually be able to keep up with this year? I could try to be more disciplined in my Bible reading, serve more in His kingdom, share His good news, spend more time with my family… but that means I would have to have a really good schedule, eat really healthy and exercise, so I can keep up…
I don’t have a clue how I’m going to do this. Why am I doing this? Why am I applying
this pressure on my life? Are these plans to make me feel good? Is this my attempt for the New Year to please God? Is this the good news of Christianity? Is the Gospel of Jesus to
make us crazy and weary making new plans to be better, to obey, to do more… only to fail again? No its not!
In his book “Gospel” JD Greear says: “Being converted to Jesus is not just about learning to obey some rules. Being converted to Jesus is learning to so adore God that we would gladly renounce everything we have to follow Him.”
But how do I get there? How do I know in my heart that no matter how many times I fail, His love toward me does not change? How do I live a fruitful and peaceful Christian life this year?
JD Greear goes on to says: “In the last message Jesus gave to His disciples, He told them that the way to fruitfulness and joy – the ‘secret’ to the Christian life – was to abide
in Him. They wouldn’t produce ‘abundant fruit’ by reading books, intensifying their self-discipline, memorizing Scripture, or getting in accountability groups. Those things all have their place, but real fruit comes from one place: abiding in Jesus.”
Abiding in His love is what I will do more of this year! I will not focus on the spiritual fruits in my life, but focus on Jesus’ acceptance and love for me as a gift. Martin Luther said that we must daily “embrace the love and kindness of God…and daily exercise our faith therein; entertaining no doubts of God’s love and kindness.”
“I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know the Messiah’s love that surpasses knowledge, so you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:18-20