How are you doing with your New Year’s resolutions? Mine were always a flop, so I quit making them years ago. They stressed me out and left me feeling like a failure…which is pretty counter-productive, don’t you think?
I need a fresh start more than once a year…more like daily (and sometimes more often than that). L.M. Montgomery, author of Anne of Green Gables, said it best: “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?”
Some people focus on a specific word each year. I like that idea–a word to live by–but I never can choose just one. Living day by day is the best I can do, seeking and trusting the One who knows all my days, who provides just what I need at the very moment I need it most. And I usually have no idea what I actually, truly need anyway, but He does.
Sure, I have dreams and goals and plans, but I’ve just learned to hold them a bit loosely…because life sometimes intervenes. The past few years have been very difficult for my family. In 2014, we lost Mama’s mother and my Daddy in a 3-month span, then my husband’s grandmother a week before Christmas and Daddy’s mother on New Year’s Eve. I was so overwhelmed, so ready for the end of that year and the beginning of another one. I didn’t think I could possibly handle anything else. But 2015 quickly proved to be no better, just a different kind of intense stress that turned our world upside down and tainted most of 2016 as well. But you know what? We were cared for so very tenderly through it all. The grief, the hurt, the scars…they’re still there, but they are being changed, being healed. And we are stronger for them.
So if life has been crazy and your New Year’s resolutions got stopped in their tracks, don’t worry–you’re welcome to start over anytime. I’m so thankful for fresh starts, today and everyday.
I’m learning to make each new day better by praising the One who always cares for me and by looking for His good work…because even on the hardest days, there are gifts and blessings to be found. I’ve discovered that the act of writing down those daily blessings helps my attitude tremendously (and gives me something to look back on, especially when life is tough). If you’d like to try it, there’s a free download here at Under the Sycamore (ashleyannphotography.com) for a simple monthly calendar that you can print out to record the best part of each day.
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23 (ESV)