Choosing To Change in 2011
December 29, 2010
Your company has left, your recycle bin is full of cardboard and wrapping paper and you’re getting ready to turn the calendar page to embrace a New Year. Typically, this is the time when it’s hard to find an open treadmill at the gym – everyone swears that this is finally the year when they’re serious about dropping those extra 20 pounds. This is also going to be the year to get your finances in order, your garage clutter organized and to take some steps to improve your life.
Reality is that by the end of February, the treadmills aren’t so busy and we’re still where we were in 2010 – facing the same old issues. We need to realize that life is about choices. The ball is in our court when it comes to deciding to make next year one of change for the better. Here are some choices to prayerfully consider for the New Year:
- Doing Life Solo or Doing Life With Others
God has wired you for relationships – living in isolation is not healthy. Make this next year one where you build some significant friendships. If you’re not in a small group, join one this year.
- Putting Kids Above Your Marriage or Putting Marriage Above Your Kids
Kids take your time, energy and money. Too often there is hardly anything left for your spouse. The best thing you can give your kids is a healthy marriage. Make the effort this year to invest in your relationship with your spouse.
- Being Self-Focused or Being Others-Focused
Bill Bright, who founded Campus Crusade for Christ, said, “The secret of contentment is living life without any rights.” Develop a heart that desires to serve others around you with no expectation of return or recognition.
- Trying to Maintain Control or Realizing God’s in Control
Are you a control freak? Learning that God is ultimately in control of your life frees you from anxiety and fear. Embrace Philippians 4:13 – you can do all things through God who gives you strength – no matter what situation you’re in.
- Being Absorbed With Your Priorities or Being About God’s Priorities
It’s easy to be focused only on what you’re getting out of life. This year, dial into God’s priorities, which are found in the Bible. You’ll discover that He cares about you, the disadvantaged and especially those who are far from Him. Are you about those things? If not, ask God to show you some insights into the world around you.
- Owning Your Assets or Managing What God Has Entrusted to You
My dad used to say that there are no trailer hitches on hearses. Better yet, read 1st Timothy 6:6-10 and recognize that we enter and exit this world with nothing. Look at all of your possessions and bank accounts – tell yourself that it’s not going with you at the end. As a matter of fact, God has blessed you and entrusted all your possessions to you to manage, not own. When you understand this, you’ll see that God gives you these things to both live on and to bless others with.
You can see these are all about ‘being’ rather than ‘doing.’ It’s our prayer that you will be all that God has designed you to be (Ephesians 2:10). So what is on your change list for 2011? What steps are you planning to do to embrace change in the year ahead?
Greg Grimstad directs the Care Ministry at Eagle Brook Church and will be celebrating 30 years of marriage to Sue in 2011. They have two married daughters who live in the Twin Cities.