New Year's Resolutions | Things Above

As I was scrolling through TikTok over winter break, I couldn’t notice the trend of the “rest.” “Sunday reset”, “Monthly Reset”, and now, “New Year Reset”. While these videos included simple tasks such as deep cleaning one’s room or meal prepping for the week, the more I scrolled the more I began to feel a looming sense of pressure. I felt like I had to completely remodel my life in the weeks leading up to the new year. I had to be organized, at peace, and have a list of at least 15 goals to reach in the next 365 days. 

Every morning I would wake up and almost immediately feel anxious thinking about all of the tasks I “had” to do that day to make sure I was setting myself up for the “best year of my life.” But, at my small desk in my childhood home God tore through the lies in my mind that I needed to be a curated version of myself in order to have what one would consider a “successful” year. He reminded me that the only way that 2022 could be a year of growth and satisfaction was through Him, and Him alone. 

The main way I grew in my faith in 2021 was learning to identify the tricks that the enemy uses to pull us away from God. One of his favorite strategies is to distract us. C.S. Lewis says “the safest road to hell is the gradual one - the gentle slope, soft underfoot without sudden turnings, without milestones.” Through the process of meeting with God and submitting my expectations to Him, I was able to set some health goals for the new year that equip me to fight the spiritual battle I face every single day: complacency.

I’m sure that many people can relate to the fact that I find a lot of my worth in productivity. My Google calendar is set for the next six months and I plan out my day to the minute every single morning. Yet, for someone who plans a whole bunch, I seem to miss the mark when it comes to getting into God’s word as much as I should, which benefits Satan's cause when it comes to filling me with fear, anxiety, and mistrust. 

So, my goal for this New Year is simple: pay attention to what I pay attention to. 

One of the main excuses I make for not getting into the Word as much is not having enough time. After all, I have classes every day, a job, and the average 8.5 hours of screen time each day that I must tend to! (Kidding, of course). In order to be more consistent in the Word and dedicated to my school work, I gave a close friend my phone and had them set a screen time limit with a password that I can only pray they don’t forget.

I believe that by partnering with God and being consistent in reading through the entire Bible in a year through the Bible Recap Program will help me reach my goal of becoming more sensitive to His Spirit and will be able to see His will for my life more clearly.

My prayer for myself and for you this year is that we would listen to the words of Paul and “fill (our) minds with those things that are good and that deserve praise: things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and honorable.” I pray that we would remember that attaining a 4.0, hitting the gym every day, and doubling our social circle will only bring us so much happiness. Ultimately, the only thing that can bring us what we truly look for, satisfaction and joy, can only be found in our Father.

Author | Bentley Clark

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