We are just days away from 2017. This new year might be one of my best years ever! How about you? I do remember a few years ago when in December, I felt stuck. I needed to make progress in my life but felt immovable. I felt like my intentions were good but I really had nothing in place that developed beyond my thoughts. Consequently, I had no reason to believe the new year ahead would be any different than the current year.
Some people move ahead. They get better. Meanwhile others remain the same or even digress. Many people end the year with regrets, excuses, disappointments, and “buts.” They are stuck.
“I should be more attentive to God in prayer and Scripture reading, but . . . .”
“I need to deal with a particular sin that keeps reappearing in my life, but . . . .”
“I need to spend more time with my wife. I know I haven’t invested much energy into our marriage, but . . . .”
“I have a habit of making commitments and starting projects that need to be completed, but . . . .”
“I know I need to make progress in my walk with God this year, but . . . .”
“I can be pretty harsh and overbearing at home. I know this is wrong, but . . . .”
“My job takes so much energy and time. I feel exhausted much of the time. I need to nourish my inner world, but . . . .”
“I’m losing the emotional connection with my children. I know the answer is not to buy them more things to compensate for this, but . . . .”
“I know I should make this right with my friend, but . . . .”
Think about these statements. Each one describes the reality of a person’s life. However, the description of this reality is then derailed by the word “but.” When you and I stop short of our intentions, we are sabotaging our own lives. Instead of thanking God for the insight and awareness into the reality of our lives, we discount the first statement with “but.”