Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

A lot of us like to make New Year's Resolutions. We look over our last year, get discouraged because of our failures and weaknesses, and resolve to CHANGE: I'm gonna stop looking at porn. I'm gonna do better in my grades. I'm gonna get to bed on time. I'm gonna lose 15 pounds. I'm gonna fight harder against same sex attraction. I'm gonna get 30 min in the word every day. I'm gonna be more patient with my kids.

These are great desires! But real change doesn't come from making resolutions and exercising MORE willpower. Come on, did that work for 2011?

Our only hope for 2012 is the same hope that we had for 2011: the gospel. We CAN'T do it, but Jesus DID. He came on a rescue mission to save sinners. He died the death that we deserved, and He lived the life that we had failed to live. He gets our sin, and we get His righteousness (2 Cor 5:21). Good news!

So here's the challenge for 2012: Believe the gospel. Remember that you can't do ANYTHING in your own strength, and that in the midst of your weakness Christ has done EVERYTHING. Our salvation is by GRACE, not our own works at all. Meditate on this amazing truth from Romans 4:4-5, "Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness" (ESV)

For 2012, let's believe the gospel in a deeper way. Let's cultivate a greater love for Jesus, our Savior. Let's grow in our dependence and trust in the death and resurrection of Christ on our behalf. In the midst of failure, temptation, and struggle through 2012, let it ALL drive you to the Cross in humble, faith-filled desperation. And if along the way you get pumped and wanna lay down a few punches against your sin? Go for it.

Remembering the gospel,
The Relentless Fight