Monday, January 11, 2016

New Year's Resolutions - No, Thanks!

Everyone's been posting about New Year's Resolutions. I.don' Why? Because they're a recipe for failure.

Think about it. You write down 3, 4, 5, maybe even twenty things you want to do or change. On January 1, you're all gung-ho. By January 15, you've whittled down the list by one third. By February 1st, you're back to Christmas Day, dreaming about how your life is about to undergo a major metamorphosis.

Welcome back to the cocoon.

What's the answer, dear writer and reader? After doing the same thing for umpteen years, the answer hit me between the eyes: Change happens from the inside out, not the outside in. If I don't renew my mind with the  Word of God and fellowship with the Lord, it will automatically side with my flesh. Of course, I knew that, but the application escaped me in some areas.

Example: I'm going to cut back on social media. Yes, this is confession time. Facebook attracts me like a box of chocolate doughnuts. ...and don't get me started on Pinterest. I get on that site, and I'm lost for an hour. But I digress - you see how easy it is to get off onto a tangent?

The first thing necessary to create real change is getting scripture on the matter. No, I won't find a verse that says, "Thou shalt not spend thy entire life on Facebook." Even if I did, it wouldn't help. Jesus said it best, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with all thy heart, and with all thy soul and with all thy mind." 

Ah, I'm to love Him more than Facebook, more than writing, more than filling my mind with all the fun, good things around me. If I fill my life with them, there's no room for Him. If I ask Him what His priorities are for my life, what His goals are for my life, the extra baggage gets stripped away.

And I'm truly free. Free from the whole performance orientation thing, free from distractions. His Spirit catches mine, and we fly through each assignment. In between, there's time for the sweet treats of life - leisure activities, hobbies - in the right quantities and in the right order.

I've thought of many things I'd like to accomplish or change in 2016. As I spend time in the Word and pray, He will direct my paths.

Writers:  Is prayer an integral part of your writing life? How do you keep the demands from overwhelming you?

Readers:  How do you keep all the good stuff from crowding out the important stuff of life?

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Karen Lange said...

Prayer is an important part of my life - writing and otherwise. Working on keeping a good balance for everything. Good post. Thanks for the insight. :)

Anonymous said...

" from the whole performance orientation thing." I resonate with that line. I have fallen into performance base and recognized that when I reviewed my year. I can also see it as a season though and now that season is changing. Reflection and prayer helps me keep accountable to His ways for sure!

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Karen - Yes, prayer is key for me as well.

Hi Lynn - We're so geared to being productive that it's easy to fall into that performance rabbit hole. I'm glad your season is changing. May 2016 be your best year to date. :)