By Waylon Bailey
Almost everyone makes New Year’s resolutions, and almost no one follows through. In fact, most people don’t even make it through January for their hoped for new way of living.
If you want to start something new, you have to do something different.
What are some things you can do to make significant changes in your life?
First, invite God to be a part of your change. Ask Him to help you do the things you already know you need to do. Many of the changes we need to make in life have to do with spiritual things. For example, if you want to make your relationships better, that is something God has already wanted for you.
Let God bless your change. Pray about it everyday. Don’t let it simply be what you want; look to Scripture and find what God wants in your life.
Second, invite other people to encourage you in your relationships. James Clear in Atomic Habits shows some things we have known in the church for years: we become like the people around us. Therefore, find a group of people who eat right, go to the gym, pray and read Scripture, and seek integrity and compassion in their lives. Over time you will pick up their dreams and habits.
Third, read books that will help you learn and grow. What you think about you will become (Proverbs 23:7). I find great strength, help, and encouragement from reading good books. Above all else, I want to read the Bible so that I am constantly being reminded of the mind of Christ and the will of God.
Finally, put your desired habits in a context. James Clear and others talk about bundling habits. Suppose you want to read the Bible daily. Find a time and place to do so where you are reminded of Bible reading. For example, you might choose to read immediately after lunch (who forgets lunch?). Having made that association will help you follow through on your commitment.
We all need to grow and change. May God bless you as you desire to do so.
Waylon Bailey is senior pastor of the First Baptist Church in Covington. This editorial first appeared on his blog, which can be subscribed to here.