It’s here: another New Year

It’s here: another New Year. Same old clichés, jokes, and promises to do better: to quit this or that, or exercise more. And we wonder: Why does last years Leaf look so tattered? Perhaps we’ve tried to change or delete something when all along we’ve neglected to give ourselves something.
We tend to think if we keep others happy and serve in every conceivable place, God is pleased. We feed our work with unwavering loyalty; we feed other’s needs whether it’s family, friends or those less fortunate. We’re spread so thin we starve ourselves.
The scriptures are not peppered with verses telling us to ignore the unique individual God made. Psalm 139 reads, “ . . .[we] are fearfully and wonderfully made:” That “God gives us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17, NKJV). And in 1 Kings 5:32 we learn living like a recluse is not necessary in order to enjoy accomplishments outside of work. King Solomon ran a nation, but made use of his God given talents/gifts in other ways, too: “He spoke three thousand proverbs, and his songs were one thousand and five.”
“But,” one may ask, “How do I get 28 hours out of a 24 hour day? There’s no time for developing my interest or hobbies!” A friend of mine wanted to play the flute. But her schedule didn’t allow for long hours of practice. Her solution? Five minutes. Five minutes a day she practiced—consistently—everyday except Sunday. A yarn designer, when asked how she accomplished so much answered: “Each day I work on an unfinished project for ten minutes—consistently—and before I know it, I’m finished.”
Feeling resentful and grumpy over putting aside that inner, personal longing, we might lose our effectiveness for God. But take heart, God promises us help with our bucket-list. Psalm 37: 4 says, “Delight yourself also in the Lord. And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” And in Matthew 6:32, 33: “For Your Heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. Seek first the kingdom of God and . . . all these things shall be added to you.” As we delight and seek the Lord first through prayer or in His Word, we’ll receive far more than we ask. The Lord knows: “Hope that is deferred makes a heart sick, but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life” (Proverbs 13:12). And, “A desire accomplished is sweet to the soul” (19).
This New Year let’s give our self something for life. Want to learn a foreign language? Can’t afford school? Check out a beginner’s book at the library. Learn one word a day, and review those previously memorized. In a year you’ll know 365 words!!! Congratulations, last year at this time you didn’t know any. Jesus said in John 10: 10 “I have come that they [we] may have life and that they [we] may have it more abundantly.”