Annually, during the last week of December, I reflect on the year past and think about the year to come. I often read through my journal of the past year, look through my notes from my morning devotions and browse through photos. This helps recall to my memory all of the events and the lessons I've experienced and learned over the last 365 days. I've wrestled with this a little bit recently, wondering if it's a waste of time or too much self-focus.
Goals and resolutions can get out of hand. We can become so fixated on our own sanctification that we neglect those around us. This is pride and self-worship. But, this kind of reflection and resolution is not the type I have in mind. My aim in musing over the past year is three-fold:
1. To see the hand of the providence of God in my life and to give Him praise and thanksgiving for it.
2. To seal in my heart the lessons that the Lord has taught me.
3. To seek to walk in the ways that the Lord would have me to walk in for the upcoming year.
So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
~ Psalm 90:12
John Piper says that at the end of each year, he looks upon it as if it were his last. He ponders which things were a blessing and which things were not done well. He reflects on his satisfactions and his regrets. And then, he thinks about the upcoming year as a gift from God; another opportunity to live with less regrets. I think that this year, I'll do the same. I'll prayerfully muse on this past year and seek the Lord's counsel on how He'd wish me to live in 2012. I want to set goals that will glorify the Lord, each with a scriptural reason as to why this is a goal.
Therefore He says, "Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light." See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time because the days are evil.
~ Ephesians 5:14-16
So with that being said, what are your thoughts on goals and resolutions? Will you be making any for 2012?