While the future is not a guarantee, many of you are most likely making preparations for the upcoming year. Maybe you are gearing yourself for a year of fitness. For the 18th year in a row, your goal is to exercise and get in shape. Or you look forward to starting the year with consistency in something you deem is important.
On a broad scale, New Years resolutions are as frequent as the common cold. But getting over those resolutions tends to happen at a more rapid pace than recovering from acute rhinitis. Research reveals those who make resolutions are most likely to default on them; not seeing them to fruition.
But where can we receive motivation for our resolutions? Or is there anyone in recent memory who was an example of steadfast resolve. For me, when it comes to being resolved, outside of Jesus Christ and the apostle Paul, there may not be a better person to learn from than Jonathan Edwards.
Let me caution you, this is not a list of resolutions guaranteed to help you maintain your eating diet or your fitness goals. Quite frankly, this is not a guarantee for anything or anyone apart from the Holy Spirit’s work. This is not really about method as much as it is about motive and living to please God. That to me is the only resolution worthy of effort and focus. That single resolution will fuel all other secondary resolutions.
This list of resolutions is indeed a treasure that will convict and challenge everyone. This is a list by a man, who at a very young age was firm in his faith. He knew that the ultimate resolution was to live for Christ and if he were to die, he would gain Christ (Phil. 1:21).
Thank the Lord for men who are an example of a transformed life for us to emulate and appreciate what God has done for them.
Out of the 70 resolutions, I have chosen what I think may be the top 20 (completely subjective). I have also taken liberty to change some of the language (in parenthesis) to make reading smoother but still maintaining consistency. If you would like to read them all in order, the website is below.
Enjoy to the glory of God!
Resolution #1: Resolved, that I will do whatsoever I think to be most to God’s glory, and my own good, profit and pleasure, in the whole of my duration, without any consideration of the time, whether now, or never so many myriads of ages hence. Resolved to do whatever I think to be my duty and most for the good and advantage of mankind in general. Resolved to do this, whatever difficulties I meet with, how many soever (they may be), and how great soever (they may be).
Resolution #4: Resolved, never to do any manner of thing, whether in soul or body, less or more, but what tends to the glory of God; nor be, nor suffer it, if I can avoid it.
Resolution #5: Resolved, never to lose one moment of time; but improve it the most profitable way I possibly can.
Resolution #6: Resolved, never to do anything, which I should be afraid to do, if it were the last hour of my life.
Resolution #8: Resolved, to act, in all respects, both speaking and doing, as if nobody had been so vile as I, and as if I had committed the same sins, or had the same infirmities or failings as others; and that I will let the knowledge of their failings promote nothing but shame in myself, and prove only an occasion of my confessing my own sins and misery to God
Resolution #9: Resolved, to think much on all occasions of my own dying, and of the common circumstances which attend death.
Resolution #10: Resolved, when I feel pain, to think of the pains of martyrdom, and of hell.
Resolution #12: Resolved, if I take delight in it as a gratification of pride, or vanity, or on any such account, immediately to throw it by.
Resolution #16: Resolved, never to speak evil of anyone, so that it shall tend to his dishonor, more or less, upon no account except for some real good.
Resolution #17: Resolved, that I will live so, as I shall wish I had done when I come to die (live with no regret).
Resolution #20: Resolved, to maintain the strictest temperance, in eating and drinking.
Resolution #25: Resolved, to examine carefully, and constantly, what that one thing in me is, which causes me in the least to doubt of the love of God; and to direct all my forces against it.
Resolution #28: Resolved, to study the Scriptures so steadily, constantly and frequently, as that I may find, and plainly perceive myself to grow in the knowledge of the same.
Resolution #34: Resolved, in narrations never to speak any thing but the pure and simple verity (truth).
Resolution #41: Resolved, to ask myself, at the end of every day, week, month and year, wherein I could possibly, in any respect, have done better.
Resolution #48: Resolved, constantly, with the utmost niceness and diligence, and the strictest scrutiny, to be looking into the state of my soul, that I may know whether I have truly an interest in Christ or not; that when I come to die, I may not have any negligence respecting this to repent of.
Resolution #52: I frequently hear persons in old age, say how they would live, if they were to live their lives over again: Resolved, that I will live just so as I can think I shall wish I had done, supposing I live to old age.
Resolution #53: Resolved, to improve every opportunity, when I am in the best and happiest frame of mind, to cast and venture (to trust even at risk of a loss) my soul on the Lord Jesus Christ, to trust and confide in him, and consecrate myself wholly to him; that from this I may have assurance of my safety, knowing that I confide in my Redeemer.
Resolution #62: Resolved, never to do anything but duty, and then according to Eph. 6:6-8, to do it willingly and cheerfully as unto the Lord, and not to man: “knowing that whatever good thing any man doth, the same shall he receive of the Lord.”
Resolution #70: Let there be something of benevolence, in all that I speak.
Blessings to you in Christ for 2015. Be resolved to bring honor to God.