Who wouldn't love to see each new year bring a turn for the better? Yet, most of us realize that replacing an old calendar with a new one doesn’t really change much. Change requires more.
If someone wants to be a better person — a healthier person, a more successful person, a more educated or spiritual person — it is going to take more than a New Year’s resolution.
One reason for this is because any significant life change — be it to lose weight, quit smoking or getting out of debt — requires a serious commitment and a realistic plan with the realization that one does not want to continue down a certain path anymore.
Yes, the end of one year and the start of another causes many to reflect on their life and how they are using it. But if we really want to change, it has to go beyond soul searching and translate into actions. So ask yourself, is it time for a change? That’s the beauty of having free will. If we don’t like who we are, we can change. We can change our minds, our manners and our circumstances with time and determination. We can even change our appearance. So what would you like to change?
Whatever it is, you can join the millions of people who feel it will be more rewarding if it is approached from a better relationship with God and His only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ.
In John 17:3, Jesus gives us a good reason why this is true. He said coming to know the only true God and the one whom He sent forth, Jesus Christ, means everlasting life. So why not include Bible reading, prayer and meditation in your resolution and see if this increased knowledge of God and Christ can help you.
In Ephesians 4:22-24, we are told that God will help us, “to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” — English Standard Version.
We can make the most meaningful changes that truly matter in life by applying Bible counsel in our lives. Consider, for example, Proverbs 4:24: “Put away from you a deceitful mouth and put devious speech far from you.” — New American Standard Bible. Would applying this counsel help us avoid problems in our relationships with others? No doubt.
What about Proverbs 17:9, which says, “He who covers and forgives an offense seeks love, but he who repeats or harps on a matter separates even close friends.” — Amplified Bible.
Psychologists say people are happier when we are more forgiving. Aren’t you? Imagine how much better all marriages and friendships would be if we started applying that counsel?
Philippians 2:3 says, “Don’t be jealous or proud, but be humble and consider others more important than yourselves.” — Contemporary English Version. Think about which type of person you prefer to be around — a proud or jealous person or someone humble and modest? Why not choose to be the person you value the most? James 4:6 says, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” — New International Version.
Millions have benefited by applying the Bible’s counsel at Titus 3:2, “To slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.” — New International Version.
Have you ever been in the company of someone who excels in these qualities? Why not ask them how they did it? Learn from others. At the same time, follow the Bible’s counsel at Colossians 4:2: “Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.” — New Living Translation.
Drawing close to God in daily prayer has made countless people around the world happier, better human beings. As James 4:8 says, “Come close to God, and God will come close to you.” — New Living Translation.
The amazing thing about lingering in prayer and in the word of God is that we tap into Someone more powerful and caring than we could have ever imagined. All of a sudden, we see the way in which we should walk, we learn how to endure and overcome adversities, because we trust in God. Life suddenly has more meaning and more joy than ever before.
As 2Timothy 3:16-17 says, “Every scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for showing mistakes, for correcting, and for training character, so that the person who belongs to God can be equipped to do everything that is good.” — Common English Bible.
If you start by reading and applying the wisdom found in God’s Word, you can be completely equipped for every good work and become much more prosperous as Psalm 1:1-3 says.
At Romans 12:2, we are told to “be transformed by making your mind over.” — New World Translation. What better way to do so than by a study of God’s Word? If you need help, ask, and it will be given you.
So, not because of a calendar or it being a new year, but because of what a change for the better can do for you, why not commit to readying, studying and understanding the Bible? Apply what you learn and share it with others?
These steps can bring a change in your life for which you will forever be grateful and blessed.