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Look Forward To 2009 – Resolutions

Jonathan Edwards is the greatest mind that the United States has ever seen. He wrote extensively on a variety of subjects, but the most important of all his works are the ones that he wrote on Theology. He was a scholar, pastor, president of Princeton, father of the Great Awakening, missionary and theologian. His contribution to Christianity and to the American nation is unfathomable. During 1722-1723, while in his early 20’s, Edwards wrote out 70 resolutions for himself – and he read these weekly for the remainder of his life. Edwards was not simply a man of God, he was a man after God, and he was resolved to walk in a manner of joy and passion of God.

Every New Year Edwards and his resolutions come to mind. Not only because of the “resolutions” that I make, but also because of a legacy that Edwards left (he died at the age of 55). God used his life to bring 10’s of 1000’s to Christ and to lead a movement that makes an impact today. All because he was “resolved” to do something.

With 2009 – I have some resolutions. Not only for myself – but also for our church. Things that I think we’ll make me more like Christ and more useful in his hands. Here are a few:

1) To workout 3x’s a week. I know everyone has got a “lost weight in the New Year” or “don’t eat like swine in 2009” – but my reasons are not only health related, but emotional. Did you know that you get less depressed, more accomplish and have more energy when you work out. I started Monday – and I’m sore, but I feel great.

2) To be more intentional in connecting with people who don’t know Christ.

3) To have one family devotional a week. The schedules that all of us keep make it difficult to spend time with the family and talk about Christ – especially when you’re kids are toddlers (like mine), but those excuses need to be kicked out. I challenge all of us to do this.

4) To read 20 books this year – I know I’m a nerd – but I didn’t say how long the books were going to be.

5) To see our church highly involved in the school system: serving teachers, reaching out to students, and being in a place of influence.

6) To see Men of our church become passionate about Christ. Not that they aren’t passionate already, but I really have a burden to see guys who can retain their manliness, and yet pursue Jesus.

7) Recycle more.

8) Take Sarah Beth out on more dates.

9) Spend 30 minutes to an hour a day individually with each of my kids doing what they want to do.

10) To finish my doctorate.

11) To see River Hills Church not only grow numerically, but grow with an inward passion for Jesus.

12) To run a 5k.

13) To preach through an entire book of the Bible – get ready for May.

14) To walk with Jesus daily in prayer and reading of the Bible. This is something I’ve practiced, or tried to practice for the last 15 years – I don’t always get a chance to spend that time alone with God, but I make it a point to try. This year I want to have more time with Him and less time “trying.”

I’d love to hear some of your New Year’s resolutions. I know that we don’t always keep them, but maybe if we became like Edwards: have a heartfelt desire to follow Christ – and make that our resolution – and let the other resolutions build off of that.

Let me hear from you – I’d love to hear about what you want 2009 to be. I’ll have more tomorrow. Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve.

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