Today is the very last day of 2023. And while there’s nothing really but a societally imposed difference between today, the last day of 2023, and tomorrow, the first day of 2024, it’s still a useful marker for us. It’s a time when people reflect about the year that has passed and start thinking about new year’s resolutions, how they want to live differently in the year ahead.
Typically our resolutions try to change some part of ourselves and our lives, and we’ve even learnt to make our resolutions “SMART” resolutions (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound, for those who wanted to know) – so, things like: this year I will lose 10 kg by the middle of the year, or I will exercise twice every week for at least 10 minutes each time. I’ve had these for a while and still haven’t managed to fulfil them, and I’m sure each of you have your own versions of “perpetual” resolutions. And at least for me, a large part of the reason I haven’t followed through on my resolutions is because I haven’t really held myself accountable for them, whether to other people or to myself. Isn’t that also the case for most of us?
I wonder what your resolutions for 2024 are – what do they say about the life you want to lead in 2024, the disciple of Christ that you hope to grow into in the year ahead? And I wonder how many of us will be able to follow through on our resolutions, particularly the ones relating to our spiritual life, and grow in faith in this way. For those who have set their resolutions, may I suggest that you share them with your discipleship group, and have regular group check-ins for this? And may I suggest also that your discipleship groups could set group resolutions for 2024 so that not only each group member grows, but also the whole group grows together.
As for the pastors and leaders, we will be praying throughout 2024 for each member of ORPC to grow in the knowledge and love of Christ, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might. And all this so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.