Summary: Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? Do you keep them? Let’s look at resolutions that we should make and keep.
New Year’s Resolutions
We are again approaching another New Year. Many of us will make New Year resolutions and most of us will never keep them. How many of you have already made your New Year’s resolution?
Typical New Year’s Resolutions:
What type of resolutions should we make and keep?
First let’s make a resolution to love one and another.
43 "You have heard that it was said, ’Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’
44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that?
47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?
48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Christ asks us to do something that is very difficult. Not only are we to love our enemies, but also we are to pray for them. Have you ever truly prayed for someone who has hurt you physically or emotionally? It is hard enough to love them, but to ask God to bless them seems too much. God created all people in His image, both the good and the bad. Before you were saved, someone (maybe someone that you hurt) may have prayed for you. They may have prayed for your salvation and for blessings for you. It may be because of that prayer and love that you are a Christian today. Because of the love of our Father in Heaven and the acceptance of Jesus Christ as our Savior, we are sons and daughters of God. We are to act differently than the world acts. We are to set the example and show the light and love of Jesus Christ in us. Before we were saved God loved us. Now that we are saved God not only loves us, but He calls us His sons and daughters. So this New Year let us make a resolution that we will love everyone and pray for his or her salvation. When Jesus said everyone, He means just that; male and female, young and old, all skin colors, all cultures, all religions or cults; the righteous and the unrighteous. There are none that we are not to love and pray for. We are not to love the sin in a person’s life but we are to love that person, because God created Him, just as God created us. So this New Year make a resolution to love everyone that you meet and pray for them.
Next Love your spouse
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her
26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word,
27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
Husbands, the Bible tells us a lot about marriage and divorce, but I am not going to get into that today. How much does Christ love the Church? He loved the Church enough that He took on all of our sins and carried them to the cross, where He willfully died for us. I can’t think of any higher love than this. Christ suffered greatly hanging on that old rugged cross until He gave up His last breath. It was my sins and your sins that nailed Jesus to that cross just over a couple of thousand years ago. This was true love. In the same way we are to love our wives. Next to God, our wives must be the most important things in our lives. You may say, “You don’t know my wife, she is impossible.” Men we were the same way, before we came to know Jesus Christ as our Savior and some of us may still be impossible because of our disobedience to our Lord. God loves us unconditionally and that love never fails nor does He ever divorce us. We are to love our wives the same way: unconditionally and forever. This New Year, men, make a resolution to love your wife as Christ loves the Church.
33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
Wives, your husband needs encouragement, support and love. This is respect. If you want your husband to love you with the same kind of love that Christ loves His Church, then respect your husband and love him. The old saying “you can catch more flies with honey, than vinegar” is true. If you want your husband to change for the better, then first lift him up in prayer, encourage him, support his efforts and love him even when he slips. This is respect. Wives make a resolution to love and respect your husband.