Are you ready to jump into the new year? Have you prepared your resolutions? I have a few, which I tend to repeat every year (Yes, one of them involves maintaining a healthy weight). At the dawn of this new year, it’s a good time to take stock of what’s most important in life, wouldn’t you agree?
Thankfully, there are godly men and women who can offer us valuable life lessons. One such man was Jonathan Edwards, one of the most influential pastors and theologians in American history. God used his Bible-saturated preaching to launch the Great Awakening from Northhampton, Mass., in 1734.
When he was 19 years old, he penned 70 resolutions to reflect his Christian worldview; his desire to grow in his relationship to the Lord; his goal to live with an eternal perspective; and his passion to glorify God in his life’s work. Dr. Steven J. Lawson wrote, “These resolutions recorded his [Edwards] supreme desire to live wholeheartedly for God’s honor and to discipline himself to reach this end. Edwards was unshakably determined to live for the glory of God.”
Consider whether any of these resolutions resonate with you:
- Resolved, that I will do whatsoever I think to be most to the glory of God, and my own good, profit and pleasure, in the whole of my duration.
- Resolved, never to lose one moment of time, but to improve it the most profitable way I possibly can.
- Resolved, never to do anything that I should be afraid to do if it were the last hour of my life.
- Resolved, when I feel pain, to think of the pains of martyrdom, and of hell.
- Resolved, never to speak evil of any one, so that it shall tend to dishonor.
- Resolved, that I will live so as I shall wish I had done when I come to die.
- 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.
- Resolved, never, henceforward, till I die, to act as if I were any way my own, but entirely and altogether God’s.
- 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.
- Resolved, always to do that, which I shall wish I had done when I see others do it.
(You can read all 70 resolutions here.)
Which of these is most meaningful to you? Visit our Facebook Page to tell us about your own resolutions for 2013 and beyond.
P.S. Edwards died in 1759 at age 55, only two short months after he became president of the college we know today as Princeton. He had resolved to die without regrets. What a legacy he has given us.
(Judy Hughes is a blogger and development representative in TWR's Americas office. You can learn more about Judy on her staff page. Read more of her posts here in the future.)