Life is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. No matter what season of life you’re in, during the next 14 days allow this devotion to inspire you. This plan is from Hallelujahs and Hiccups, by Kara Barker, a 100-day devotional journal that invites women from all stages, ages, backgrounds and cultures to experience 100 days of inspiration, devotion and prayer.
This is Our Year
The way you get over a crazy ending is with an amazing beginning. At the turn of a new year, many people often make resolutions to start new habits, create new experiences or even sharpen an existing skill. If you’re anything like me, you have a love-hate relationship with New Year’s resolutions. No matter how strong I start, it’s inevitable that I will fail if I don’t have some method of accountability. But like a lot of people making grand New Year’s resolutions, after a few weeks in spite of their good intentions they start to lose steam and quite frankly fizzle out. However, as the scripture, Isaiah 58:11 states, The Lord will guide you continually giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.
According to U.S. News & World Report, the failure rate for New Year’s resolutions is said to be about 80 percent, and most lose their resolve by mid-February. Bottom Line: At least 8 times out of 10, you are more likely to fall back into your old habits and patterns than you are to stick with a new behavior. Behavior change is hard and it requires more than just grit and gumption. Just think on this for a moment, how many great ideas, wonderful concepts, potential experiences were in the incubator but were never birthed because of your own internal critic said you would fail, they would laugh, they would reject you and you would be judged. But, this is our year! So, let’s start with some intentionality and become part of the 20% of people who have figured out that their purpose, drive and motivation has to be louder and more boisterous than the critic from within or cynics within one’s environment.
Everything won’t change in 2021, but you can. Nearly every habit you have today, good or bad, is the result of many small choices made over time. It is the repeated pattern of small behaviors that leads to significant results. Each day we make the choice to become one percent better or one percent worse, but so often the choices are small enough that we miss them. The underlying assumption is that your resolutions need to be big to make a difference, but that is completely bogus. The best way to capitalize on this new year and create the best resolutions are when you make small incremental changes similar to the SMART goal-setting strategy, i.e. specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based. So, friends, at the end the day, let’s commit to making small and consistent resolutions day by day. It’s quite simple, live one day at a time, not one year at a time and create a new rhythm this year that is filled with daily positive affirmations and celebrate your wins.
Although Rome wasn’t built in a day they were laying bricks every hour. This is our year, to become unstoppable. We owe it to ourselves to not settle for another year of average. This is the year, to take chances, bet on yourself, get out of your comfort zone, color outside of the lines, create a new narrative, start something new, dream bigger, learn to say NO when it matters, grow where your planted, strengthen your faith, practice wellness and maximize the many moments this year will offer.
This is Our Year!
Barker, K. (2020) Hallelujahs and Hiccups, 100 Day Devotional Journal, Dallas, TX: Takman Publishing Company.