At midnight on January 1, someone shot fireworks right over my house! Usually, this would be a welcome way to ring in the New Year, but this year it got my dog Sadie barking, and the commotion woke Mary, one of my five day old daughters. The reminder that the New Year is upon us also brings thoughts of ways to make the next year better than the previous. Did you make New Year’s resolutions?
During Weston’s sermon on Sunday, he mentioned Jonathan Edwards resolutions. Edwards lived in the 18th Century in New England, and is probably the most significant philosopher and theologian that ever lived in America. God used his preaching as one of the tools to bring the First Great Awakening, a revival that shaped the American landscape as it became a new nation. During his life, he made 70 resolutions that shaped the way he pursued God and grew in his faith. These are the kids of resolutions that will genuinely change a person’s life. I thought I’d share a few with you, and then give a link where you can look them all up.
BEING SENSIBLE THAT I AM UNABLE TO DO ANYTHING WITHOUT GOD’ S HELP, I DO HUMBLY ENTREAT HIM BY HIS GRACE TO ENABLE ME TO KEEP THESE RESOLUTIONS, SO FAR AS THEY ARE AGREEABLE TO HIS WILL, FOR CHRIST’ S SAKE.
Remember to read over these Resolutions once a week.
1. Resolved, that I will do whatsoever I think to be most to God’ s glory, and my own good, profit and pleasure, in the whole of my duration, without any consideration of the time, whether now, or never so many myriads of ages hence. Resolved to do whatever I think to be my duty and most for the good and advantage of mankind in general. Resolved to do this, whatever difficulties I meet with, how many soever, and how great soever.
3. Resolved, if ever I shall fall and grow dull, so as to neglect to keep any part of these Resolutions, to repent of all I can remember, when I come to myself again.
6. Resolved, to live with all my might, while I do live.
7. Resolved, never to do anything, which I should be afraid to do, if it were the last hour of my life.
10. Resolved, when I feel pain, to think of the pains of martyrdom, and of hell.
14. Resolved, never to do any thing out of revenge.
25. Resolved, to examine carefully, and constantly, what that one thing in me is, which causes me in the least to doubt of the love of God; and to direct all my forces against it.
28. Resolved, to study the Scriptures so steadily, constantly and frequently, as that I may find, and plainly perceive myself to grow in the knowledge of the same.
40. Resolved, to inquire every night, before I go to bed, whether I have acted in the best way I possibly could, with respect to eating and drinking.
52. I frequently hear persons in old age, say how they would live, if they were to live their lives over again: Resolved, that I will live just so as I can think I shall wish I had done, supposing I live to old age.
68. Resolved, to confess frankly to myself all that which I find in myself, either infirmity or sin; and, if it be what concerns religion, also to confess the whole case to God, and implore needed help.
69. Resolved, always to do that, which I shall wish I had done when I see others do it.
Click here to see all of Jonathan Edwards resolutions. Happy New Year!