Article ID: JAF44SLPAK | By: Anne Kennedy
This article first appeared in the Christian Research Journal, volume 44, number 4 (2021). For further information or to subscribe to the Christian Research Journal please click here.
“I’m going to read sixty books this year,” I announced to my husband on a New Year’s Eve years ago. “And I’m also going to be a nicer person.” My husband nodded diplomatically because I say this kind of thing every December 31st. He, on the other hand, when asked about his resolutions, never has any. He is a disciplined person who never breaks his diet unless he plans to beforehand. He sits down in his chair every evening at 7 p.m. to read a book for pleasure. He wakes before the dawn to pray and exercise. In this way, he never has any weight to lose nor anxiety about his salvation because he forgot to read the Bible.
Meanwhile, I don’t remember I’m on a “diet” until confronted with an irresistible treat. I careen from one task to the next with no forethought, and whenever I sit down in a chair in the evening, I fall asleep before I can turn a page. That year, however, for the first time in my life, I did read sixty books. The next year I upped my goal to seventy-five and reached it. This year I aimed for 100, but I expect I will fall well short because I’m doing other things like writing this article.
Should Christians make New Year’s resolutions? And if so, what kind? Are there any guiding biblical principles that might inform and shape such a task?
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