With the start of another year, I’ve been thinking about resolutions. I even preached a sermon on it. In that sermon I explained how resolution making often drives us deeper into ourselves and our own resources and strengths. And it often depresses us by revealing (like all laws) our deficiencies and failings. But then, following Paul, I suggested (for myself and for our church) that we resolve to know nothing (in 2010) except Jesus Christ and him crucified. Such a resolution moves us from our own strength (which in fact is weakness) to the One who is strong and resolute for us, the one who provides help from outside of us.
While I stand by that sermon, I don’t think all resolution making is wrong. Properly conceived resolutions can aid our primary purpose of knowing Christ crucified. To that end here are two of my 2010 resolutions:
1) Read more books and less internets.
Without being a Luddite (this is a blog afterall—and one which has championed Google Reader in the past), when I read books I stretch different mental muscles than I do when I read web pages. The discipline of reading hundreds of pages, of following an argument unfolded over the course of a chapter, of pausing to think with forefinger holding my place shapes me and shows me how I (and this world) need more of Christ.
2) Read the Bible more faithfully and systematically.
I realize that Bible reading feels to many like a classic form of legalism, but it also is a wellspring of life. It can help us know Christ and Him crucified by showing us Him through God’s Word. There are a great number of helpful daily Bible reading plans available (as hard copy print-outs or online, and through rss feed or via podcast), even for the slackers among us.
May whatever resolutions you make this year help you see more on Christ and less on yourself.