Friday, January 02, 2009

A TIME TO RESOLVE!

As we come upon another new year it is correct form for people to look back and take stock of their lives. Critique the last year and note the progress or lack thereof.
And of course it is the time to look ahead and make those resolutions. What it is that we resolve to do in the coming year? I want to challenge us at the end of 08 and the beginning of 09 to also make some resolutions, but in a new and different way.

Jonathan Edwards was one of the greatest theological minds America has ever or ever will see. He was also a tremendous preacher of the Word of God. It is said that he would read his sermons in near monotone, word for word from a manuscript he had written out. Yet God moved mightily when he preached. He was neither the most charismatic of preachers nor the most entertaining in form and style, yet God moved when the man spoke.

The question is why? Why did God move so mightily when Edwards opened the Word? In looking for the answer we want to be careful to not seek some magic formula for growth or key to success. What we should want is to know what Edwards had that we can learn and take note of. Here it is; I believe what Edwards had was a list of resolutions. He made some seventy or more resolutions at a very young age. In his early twenties he resolved to do some things, and not to do some others. As we approach the New Year I thought it might be helpful if we took a look at a few of his resolutions, and maybe make them our own. Edwards resolved, and then did his best to live out what he had resolved to God. Here are a few to consider making your own, with passion as Jonathan Edwards did.
Resolved, never to do any manner of thing, whether in soul or body, less or more, but what tends to the glory of God; nor be, nor suffer it, if I can avoid it.
Resolved, never to lose one moment of time; but improve it the most profitable way I possibly can.
Resolved, to live with all my might, while I do live
Resolved, when I feel pain, to think of the pains of martyrdom, and of hell
Resolved, never to speak evil of anyone, so that it shall tend to his dishonor, more or less, upon no account except for some real good
Resolved, never to do any thing, which I should be afraid to do, if I expected it would not be above an hour, before I should hear the last trump
Resolved, never willfully to omit any thing, except the omission be for the glory of God; and frequently to examine my omissions
Resolved, to inquire every night, before I go to bed, whether I have acted in the best way I possibly could, with respect to eating and drinking
Resolved, never to give over, nor in the least to slacken, my fight with my corruptions, however unsuccessful I may be
May God bless you all this coming year!
Pastor Tom
www.engagingyourworld.com