For me as a believer “to do or not to do” that is the first question as far as doing it as a resolution. The what is usually not much of an issue for us. It’s usually a pressing issue: like losing weight, or quit smoking for your health or perhaps going back to school or improving in some other area in your life.
When I was growing up there was a popular song that had the following lyrics: “You gotta let your yah be yah when your no be no.” Looking back I wonder if they took that from a Bible Scripture. So, what does the Bible say about making resolutions.
Matthew 5:33-37 (ESV)
33 “Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’
34 But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God,
35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King.
36 And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black.
37 Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.
In the King James version verse 37 says
“But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.”
Or in other words “let your yah be yah and your no be no.” Don’t take a vow unless you are ready to keep it. New Year’s Resolutions don’t work, in my opinion, because of two things.
The biggest reason is a person tries to do it in their own strength. Now if they could do it in their own strength they would have already done it.
The second reason is there are doing it in a rigid impractical way. Let me use dieting for example. If you are on a special diet to lose weight and you accomplish your goal; then what happens when you reach your goal. You usually go off the diet immediately or at some point. Why? Because its not practical.
I remember a show before a show. Let me explain. Before the show “The Biggest Loser” became a household name they would go into small communities and challenge people to lost weight. I remember in a small town, I think it was in Iowa, they did this.
I remember watching this program and at the end when they were nearing their goals; two people make these two statements. One said he could hardly wait to make his goal and as soon as he did then he was going to pig out at Daily Queen. Another contestant, a lady made this statement. It was an interesting contrast. She said after she hit her weight goal she was going to make some permanent lifestyle changes and continue to modify what she ate. Basically, she would try to eat mainly healthy things that helped her lost weight and be healthy. She said she would also allow herself treats. She was determined to make it work. There wasn’t any follow-up after that, but I can tell you that Diets don’t work if you don’t have a Follow-up plan; or in other word transition or just start with a Lifestyle change.
Losing weight is an area that I need to work on this next year. I will then teach on it on my Facebook Live Broadcast. I told the Lord that I wouldn’t teach on anything till I can live it myself. So, stay tuned.
So, what is the best way to achieve a goal? This is my opinion.
1. If you need a plan (ask God for wisdom) and consult people who are knowledgeable in that area
James 1:5 (ESV)
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”
“Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.”
2. Admit you can’t do it in your own strength
Humble yourself before God. He loves it when we look to him for his power instead of our own willpower. Then make the switch from your willpower to God’s Power (Hey yours hasn’t worked so far. Why not try his?)
James 4:10 (KJV)
“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.”
Philippians 4:13 (ESV)
"I can do all things through him who strengthens me"
Really trust him with it? Do it daily and mean it from your heart. Keep saying I can’t do it with my willpower but your power is sufficient. He will put your over the top. So, let your yah be yah and let God be your source of strength. God power goes a lot farther than our will-power.