“So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives.  Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.”  Galatians 5:16

It’s a New Year's tradition to put a resolution goal out there.  For some it’s exercise, with January being the month when the most gym memberships and exercise equipment are sold.  For others it’s just eating better after all the Halloween, Thanksgiving, & Christmas treats have overwhelmed our will power and our waist lines.  And for some it’s a time to get rid of bad habits.  You can fill in the blank there.  As I’m writing this though, many who have started out well may have already ended their attempts.  Two weeks is the average for those who make resolutions and then stop before succeeding.  I could make a list of mine over the years, but I’m limited on how much space I can take up here.  I’ll just say it’s easier to start strong than to stay for the long haul.  Endurance and motivation can easily succumb to fatigue and discouragement.

The football game that ended in a heroic catch and touchdown by the Vikings is a picture of not giving up until your time is up.  The backstory of that quarterback is interesting too.  Did you know he wasn’t drafted by an NFL team even though he had set NCAA Division 1 records at the University of Houston, his college team?  Look it up.  It’s a story of sticking to it and not giving up.  But the main story I must share about this man is the statement he made after the game.  He said, “This is the third best thing that has ever happened to me.  The first was giving my life to Jesus Christ, and the second was marrying my wife.”  This comes on the heels of another come-from-behind story in the NCAA National Football Championship game in which a freshman stepped into the lineup for Alabama and led them to the title.  And what did he say in his postgame interview?  "Excuse me, but I just have to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who makes all things possible.”  These are just two of millions of stories of people who have experienced the goodness of God through the grace of Jesus Christ and the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, and then have shared that good news with the world, whenever and wherever they are given the opportunity.

Paul says that he is running the race toward the goal of being with Jesus.  That race is the journey we are all on.  So, don’t give up and don’t let discouragement define you, but keep getting up when you fall, and He will be your constant companion, your everlasting hope, and the carrier of your burdens whenever they weigh you down.  Resolve to love Him with all that you have and love others as you love yourself.  Always remember that neither success nor failure defines our worth to our Savior and Lord.  Our identity is in Him who made us, whose image we bear, whose creation we care for, and whose humanity we work to restore.  With the help and power of the Holy Spirit we keep going.  Because He gave His all for our salvation, we have the privilege of being redeemed and that’s better than any New Year’s resolution success story.  God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good!

In Christ’s Love,

Rob - Romans 12