Well, it’s officially 2012 and the New Year is upon us. I’m sure you made some great resolutions about how this year is going to be different. I think when it comes to resolutions for the future, the more simple the better. And, if we are honest, there are really only certain segments of our lives that we would like to change. Oh it may seem like there are so many undesirable elements we need to fix, but in reality it probably boils down to some central, core issue or problem. So our job is to figure out that one area that gives us pain. If you have ten things on your New Year’s resolution list, you probably have too many. So take some time to think a little deeper about what’s bothering you. Do you want to lose weight because you need to in order to be healthy and live longer or do you need to lose weight so that you fit within the “world’s definition of sexy? Are you seeking more money because you have unmet needs and things that need to be addressed or are you trying to measure up to the “world’s” status symbols of what “living the good life” looks like? Another way to think about this is, is what you are seeking really what you are seeking? If you are pursuing a loving relationship with someone else, are you making yourself the ‘best you’ that you can be or are you hoping that special someone will somehow complete you? In order for a relationship to work best each partner must contribute something of value to the other person. If you had “issues” before the relationship you will not only have them during the relationship, but they will be magnified. If you feel unsatisfied, alone, lacking purpose, bored etc., will those things be resolved once you get more money, a new car, a spouse, or a new job? Probably not. So maybe if you take it a little deeper, what you really need is a true and vital relationship with your Heavenly Father. Maybe what you thought you needed isn’t what you really needed at all. Just maybe…
So, with all that being said, what does this have to do with the title of this blog? (I know, you just looked up and thought, what is the title of this blog?) A lot, actually! Us humans have a very bad habit. We think that by focusing on our faults and everything we don’t have and don’t do right will somehow, in some inexplicable way, get us to a good result or make us better. Interestingly, no other realm of life works successfully that way. Hmmmm…Okay, you are a Dad raising your first son and teaching him how to succeed in life. After teaching him some basics like it’s okay to make food messes, point out the size of your poop in the toilet, jump off stairs and throw things in the house as long as it’s accurate and thrown well, you proceed to help him become a better person. So, here’s your strategy: during his every waking hour you tell him what he does wrong, why it was wrong and how wrong he is for doing it. You do not make any mention of anything he might do right and instead keep focusing him back to how off the mark he is. You do this every day without relenting and then magically at age 18 ~voila` ~ he turns into a gentleman and a scholar! Nah, you know better, right? He will be a confused, insecure, lacking confidence, 18 yr. old, unable to make a good decision about anything because you whipped the life right out of him! None of us can hope to achieve our dreams in life by perpetually focusing on what we do wrong. Although, we sure seem to think it works that way, don’t we? You cannot beat yourself up day after day, ignore the 95% of things you did right and focus on the 5% you did incorrectly. Seems illogical at best. You cannot spend your precious minutes each day dragging around that mountain of yesterdays, while you try to forge into future. In order to get where you want to go, you have to recognize it is a new day.
Can you imagine what life would be like if there were not 24 hours in a day? Every 24 hours we get a brand new day, ripe with opportunities to go in the direction of our dreams. No matter what has gone on in the day, the night comes, we go to sleep and get to start all over again. What if you were having a really bad day and that day never ended? Haha-that would kinda suck, wouldn’t it? So how wonderful it is that God gave us a daily reminder of our potential new beginning. We need it. Just look at our seasons. Winter comes, things look kind of bleak, then Spring comes and everything comes back to life. God’s desire for our life is a perpetual new beginning.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. II Corinthians 5:17
We all need to be refreshed and start again. One way we can start again is to forget the yesterdays (those we don’t want to remember) and look forward to what lies ahead.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before… Philippians 3:13
So, as you move into 2012 remember the good things from 2011 and forget about all of the rest. Focus in on the person you would like to be and not the person you were last year. Set your sights on all the blessings and fun you want to enjoy this year. Remind yourself of all the things you do well. Look around at the great life you are already living. Narrow your list down and then go about the things that really matter and do it one day at a time. It truly is a new day!
Happy day after New Year’s Day!