Summary: A New Years Eve message looking at Today.
Start with e.ssentials video “Word on the Street have you made any resolutions?”
Well, we’re a week into it, how’s the New Year going for you? You doing all right with the entire resolution thing? How many people made resolutions for the New Year? It’s tough isn’t it? I mean it’s easy to find things that you need to change, especially if you are married but then to actually change those things, that’s what’s tough.
Maybe it would be a little easier if we were to give up on the hard stuff and make a resolution list that is easier to keep. It’s gotta be hard on the self esteem to make those lists every January and by February know that you haven’t kept even one of them. So here we go with Denn’s Top Ten New Years Resolutions for 2006
# 10 Gain More Weight
# 9 Exercise Less
#8 Procrastinate More
#7 Repeat More Stories
#6 Spend More Time Riding My Motorcycle
#5 Get in a Whole New Rut
#4 Eat Out More
#3 Repeat More Stories
#2 Worry More
#1 Start Padding More Sermons with Top 10 Lists
Seriously, we don’t make resolution lists like that because we want to change our life for the better in the New Year right? We want to be thinner and fitter, we want to know that we are doing better things with our lives and making a difference in the world and being a better parent or spouse. And so even if we don’t keep our resolutions, for a little while we are actually intent on becoming a better, thinner, fitter person.
I’ve actually come to the realization that I’m not overweight I’m under tall. So my top resolution is to become taller this year.
So why don’t we keep our resolutions? We start off so well, all excited about how we are going to change and the better person we are going to be. We watch what we eat, make the weight watcher meetings, weigh everything and write it down. We go to the gym three times a week splitting our work-out between cardio and weights. We don’t give into the desire for a smoke or a drink, we worry less, we hug more and the world seems to be a better place because of all our efforts.
But then something happens and we miss a day at the gym, we yell at the kids, get hunger pangs and eat a deep fried pony and then we think “I’ve blown it, I just can’t do this, why bother?” So we light a smoke, have a drink and quit.
You been there? Do you know what I’m talking about? How do we become better people and take our resolutions from pie in the sky to reality?
I think the answer comes from a couple of different places. The first is the answer to the age old question “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer being of course “one bite at a time.” And then to go to the scripture that Sajonna read for us earlier. It spoke of not bragging about the future, in fact it sums things up in James 4:14 How do you know what will happen tomorrow? For your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.
What I’m talking about is the Power Of Today. You see when we look at the entire future it becomes daunting. Can I eat this way for the rest of my life? Can I go to the gym for another thirty years? Can I go for the next 20 years without a drink or a smoke? How long can I be nice or faithful or whatever it is that I’m trying to be?
And you can’t even imagine that because you are looking at the entire elephant instead of the piece that’s on your fork right now.
Can you keep your resolution for the next 24 hours? Actually you’re probably going to sleep for 8 of those hours so can you do it for the next 16 hours. Let’s not think about tomorrow or the next day or next week or next year. When you walk out of this church today will you be able to keep your resolution until you go to bed tonight? That’s not so tough is it? That’s The Power of Today.
Now I am in no way preaching that we shouldn’t dream about what could be, the building that we are worshipping in today is evidence of the power of a dream. But don’t miss today because you are so focused on tomorrow.
There are a couple of things that need to be recognized as we move ahead into 2006. The first is we need to acknowledge that Life Is Uncertain. For all the knowledge we have, the future is still uncertain. One of my favourite philosophers said “It’s hard to make predictions, especially about the future.” Yogi Berra. And that’s evidenced by the statement attributed to Thomas Watson then Chairman of IBM who is reputed to have said in 1945 “I think there’s a world market for about five computers.” Or Ken Olsen (President of Digital Equipment Corporation) who commented at the Convention of the World Future Society in 1977 “There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in their home.”