And just like that, half of January is already over. But I believe it’s still not too late to start the year—or the remaining days of the year—right.
January always brings for me a sniff of fresh hope. It’s the month where people usually planning out the year, coupled with writing down their goals for the year. I wrote about pre-planning a couple of weeks ago, followed by how to start the year with faith goals too.
But, try as we might, our year never really turns out the way we thought they would, does it? We plan and plan and plan, yet some things are just really out of our control. In cases like these, what do we do?
When I was a lot younger, I used to write down the same new year’s resolutions every year. Weight loss, healthy living, boyfriend (haha) among others. But a couple of months down the line, I found myself giving up on all of them.
Then I started going to church where they had a five-day corporate prayer and fasting activity as a way to align our hearts with God’s at the beginning of the year. During this time, we were to write down our faith goals for the year, and pray and fast for them.The activity of writing down my faith goals instantly replaced my new year’s resolutions, and I have seen God’s work in them ever since.
This 2018 would be my sixth year of writing down my faith goals, and I am excited to watch how God will move in my life and others’ lives through them.
Now you may be thinking, Okay that’s nice to hear, but what exactly are faith goals?
As the year draw to a close and a new one inches even closer, I find a lot of my friends already planning for the coming year ahead. Just earlier this month, a friend of mine asked in our group chat, “How far along do you plan your life?” I had to pause before I answered, if only because I never really thought about it. I just thought it was something I did every year.
Are you a planner? I think I’d consider myself as someone who plans, but not obsessively. I used to be a lot more uptight about the way I planned, then I got serious about my faith and everything changed. I’ve since then only considered three simple things as I begin every year. It has saved me brain space and energy, because I’ve got these things locked in before the year began.
When sin entered the world, mankind had done countless attempts of ‘starting over again with God,’ including the sacrificing of animals, the observation of rituals, and the strict adherence to the laws. But no matter how good they were in these acts of atonement, they would always fall back to sin (remember the Pharisees?). Why was it this way?
A week ago, I posed the question: Where do you start in starting over? I wrote in my last entry that a good place to start would be, “I’m sorry.” Apologizing and repenting of one’s own wrongdoing is tough, but there’s no way to solve a problem if we don’t even recognize the problem to begin with.
You know what repentance is best paired with?