Q: Every year I come up with a long list of New Year’s resolutions, but then I end up not keeping even one. I’m sincere when I make them, but then they somehow fall by the wayside as time passes. What’s my problem? God must be very disappointed in me. — Z.D.
A: I suspect many readers could echo your words. After all, each of us wants to become a better person and have a better life, and yet it eludes us. Even the Apostle Paul admitted, “I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out” (Romans 7:18).
Sometimes our New Year’s resolutions fail because they aren’t realistic, and frankly, there’s no use including something on our list that simply isn’t going to happen. Others fail because we don’t take steps to make them happen, that is, we have no action plan. In other words, we wish for something to happen, but that’s all it is: a wish. Still others fail because we aren’t willing to make the sacrifices that are necessary to bring them about.
But we also fail for a deeper reason: We don’t have the moral and spiritual strength within us to live the way we know we should. We need God’s help, and yet in our pride we refuse to turn to him, and we try to improve our lives without him. As a result we fall short.
At the beginning of this new year turn to Jesus Christ and commit your life without reserve to him. Then ask him to give you the strength to become the kind of person he wants you to be. Make Jesus’ words your guide: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).
Write “My Answer,” Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; or visit www.billygraham.org.