Strength and Power
O God, You are more awesome than Your holy places. The God of Israel is He who gives strength and power to His people. Blessed be God . . . . He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength. Psalms 68:36; Isaiah 40:29 NKJV
As we say “goodbye” to one year and welcome the start of a New Year, many have made or considered a New Year’s resolution. Here’s a word of Scriptural advice: It is better not to start the New Year with resolutions and lofty ideas because God wants us to renew our commitment to Him and His Word. No matter how far we ascended in the previous year, we can still go higher this year. No matter how low we may have fallen last year, we can be lifted up to a higher place in the Lord this year.
A resolution is a determination, an unwavering decision that promises change and improvement that often leaves us with disappointment, discouragement, and a sense of failure and guilt. But if you’ve had a weakness or problem, a solution is the answer to your problem—not a resolution. A God-given solution gives us strength and power to live transformed lives. Transformation is a major change that occurs in your thinking, believing, and your behavior (Rom.12:1-2). Let me suggest some “solutions” that the Word of God offers to give us strength and power to transform our lives in the New Year:
Self-Appreciation – It is equally important to love God with all that is within us as well as loving ourselves, i.e., appreciating and valuing God’s view of us, in order to love others (Matthew 22:37-40). Self-appreciation is a healthy solution to strengthen and empower us to overcome feelings of low self-esteem, low self-worth, and a poor self-concept. An emotional resolution made because it is a new year will always leave you frustrated and condemned when it goes unfulfilled.
Purpose – Whatever God’s purpose is for you this year is the same as it was always. Purpose is God’s eternal predetermined intention for your life, established before the foundation of the world; it is “a setting forth of a thing” (Eph. 1:3-5; 3:11; Eccl. 3:1; Rom. 8:28). God gives His people strength and power to transform their acknowledgment of this truth regardless of year-end or beginning a new year.
Vision – The beginning of realizing and understanding God’s purpose and to answer the question: “why was I born, or why am I here on planet earth”?, it is absolutely necessary to develop a mental picture of what you believe about your purpose—not to make a New Year’s resolution (Prov. 29:18).
Commitment – Whatever we believe that our purpose is and what we believe about the vision we see of ourselves and our service unto God, it is imperative to always stay committed to God and ourselves, True commitment is not seasonal or time-of-year sensitive. It is the act of pledging steadfastness to God and just keeping the faith (Luke 9:62; Heb. 10:38).
Contribution – Last but not least, God-given strength and power that transforms–out of necessity—includes living a life of contribution (giving). Giving is loving and loving is always manifested through transformed life that gives time, talent, treasure, and even encouragement to others (Luke 6:38; Acts 20:35).
Every year, end of year, middle of the year, monthly or daily, God gives His people strength and power to live transformed lives—not lofty resolutions. “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might! (Eph. 6:10).