Friday, December 29, 2006

14 Refusals for the New Year

Douglas Groothuis has a thought provoking post in which he lists, instead of New Year's resolutions, his New Year's denials. The basic format he follows is "I refuse to X, instead I will Y". I thought I could benefit from the exercise of thinking of and writing out a few of my own.

1. I refuse to neglect prayer and the reading of God's Word. Instead, I will take measures to avoid going through one day without a significant time of prayer and reading of God's Word.

2. I refuse to neglect those whom I love. Instead, I will do my best to serve them and be a blessing to them, even in the most minute way.

3. I refuse to accept the counterfeit joys of envy, impatience, lust, greed, pride, gluttony, self-indulgence, etc. over the true joy of walking righteously in Jesus Christ, Instead, by the grace of God, I resolve to live a life which is characterized by a yielding to the Spirit and choosing the true joy over the false counterfeit "joys".

4. I refuse to buy any more books until I've bridged the gap between my "read" and "owned" counts. Instead, I will try to save more money and/or seek opportunities to use it better.

5. I refuse to let my shy side/secluded side dominate. Instead, I will actively seek opportunities to reach out, communicate better, and be more social.

6. I refuse to make "filler" posts on my blog. Instead, if I don't have anything worthwhile to say, I will just not post.

7. I refuse to let labels and social barriers dictate how I treat a person. Instead, I will try to treat all people in a consistent and barrier transcending way.

8. I refuse to bow to the North American "do not talk to strangers" mentality. Instead, I will be unafraid to make eye contact and converse with strangers (within reason of course).

9. I refuse to let me comfort, personal security, or habit always dictate what I do. Instead, I will try to be more willing to go "out on a limb" where I feel necessity or expediency would suggest it.

10. I refuse to spend more time on anything than is profitable. Instead, I will seek to manage my time better and prioritize things better.

11. I refuse to join in on the societal trends towards lying, ambiguous communication, double talk, and the excessive desire to hide things. Instead I seek to be always honest and clear and, where it is expedient, transparent.

12. I refuse to be lazy with my spelling. Instead, I will try to root out the errors I make frequently and look up words when I am unsure of their spelling.

13. I refuse to keep anything just for the sake of keeping it. Instead, I will throw out all that trash that has no purpose or value and keep things tidy.

14. I refuse to be grumpy. Instead, I will SMILE and LAUGH.

By God's grace, these are my refusals. For every affirmation there is a denial, and vice versa. Some of them are a tall order. Others are easy for me, and are moreso reaffirmations. I do anticipate failing in some of these refusals in the New Year. And only by His grace can I make any progress in this New Year. Do hold me accountable :)

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