When I walk into my local Big Box store, on one side of the aisle are protein supplements and health shakes, and on the other side are exercise machines and fitness paraphernalia. Retailers, wholesalers, and gyms are ready as early as Thanksgiving for the resolutions we make on New Year’s Day. Did you know that the average resolver keeps their New Year pledge for 3.74 months? That’s actually longer than I expected. If I were to estimate the average based on my own experience, it would be closer to one month.
I can be negative toward the idea of New Year’s resolutions because it sometimes feels like a Hallmark holiday—retailers capitalize on a single day of the year to take advantage of certain positive human qualities like love and our desire to change.
With that said, and despite the money-seeking parasites, I really do believe that the holiday tradition of making New Year’s resolutions is a positive thing. Even if it’s just one day a year, it reminds people that changing ourselves is a good thing, and that we as people CAN change. How many times have you heard someone say “That’s just the way I am?” Or maybe you have made this silly assertion. This statement implies a mindset that change is impossible. But what it really means is that change is hard, and we aren’t willing to put in that effort.
The thing is, the very nature of being a human is that change is not only possible, but it is necessary if we ever truly want to be happy. If a seed doesn’t change, it will never be a plant. If a caterpillar doesn’t change, it will never be a butterfly. If a baby doesn’t change, it will never be an adult. And if we don’t change, we will never be angels. Speaking through Ezekiel, Jehovah says, “I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh” (Ez. 36:26). And the Lord tells us that regeneration means we actually have to become a different person from the one we are now, from being worldly and selfish to being spiritual and loving.
So, renew the membership to your spiritual gym, and start taking your spiritual protein shakes. Do your spiritual exercises. Get pumped. Get fit. No pain, no gain. You can do it! Nobody’s going to do it for you.
May you keep your spiritual resolution longer than 3.74 months.
New year; new you.