In the next month or so, you’re probably going to start hearing people
make declarations about things they’d like to do differently in 2013.
When the excitement of that new calendar year hits, many will launch
out focused & determined to make those 365 days a year to remember
Unfortunately, by April most of those same
people will no longer be motivated to continue pressing forward. I’d
like to offer a suggestion as to why:
“Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.” –
Proverbs 16:3 (NLT)
From time to time, doing something out of the norm helps to break up
the monotony associated with the day-in/day-out same old grind. And I
enjoy spontaneity just as much as the next person. But life change
results from a routine, not will power. Before your plans will be
established, Solomon says that we’d be wise to commit those plans to
the Lord. Put another way, will God be honored if the plans you have
for yourself come to pass? If not, expect those plans to fail.
As you work toward establishing the necessary routines, consistency
will be the key to making those patterns become 2nd nature. In my own
life, I’ve seen the first-hand effects of not having routines properly
established. Here’s what it looked like: I’m reading my Bible, but
not consistently. I’m praying, but not with the same fervor as I once
was. I’m seeking God, but it seems like a chore and not something I
sincerely long for.
Consider this . . . the word “pica” refers to having abnormal cravings
for substances not fit for consumption. Generally, you see this with
pregnant women when they desire to eat weird combinations of food.
Doctors say that a woman experiences pica during pregnancy because in
providing nutrients for the growing child, her body is stripped of
vitamins and minerals. To replace them, she might desire something
that normally she wouldn’t even consider (i.e. cigarette ashes, peanut
butter and pickle sandwiches, etc.). This happens because her body
says that eating this will replenish those lost nutrients.
The reason many of us need to establish some new routines is because
we’ve gone through or are going through a spiritual “pica”. We’ve
gotten into a regular routine of giving into spiritually unhealthy
cravings. And we’re trying to fill the void by doing things we know
go completely against His will.
Time for Self-Examination: Acknowledge where you need a new routine
and commit to establishing it over the next 28 days. Studies show
that it takes 21 days of a repeated behavior before a person feels
comfortable with it. It then takes 21 more days for the behavior to
become a routine. Once it becomes a routine, we’re more likely to
stick with it. If we don’t have a routine, we’ll get trapped in
If you’ll begin your new routine on Tuesday, December 4th (28 days
until the end of 2012) and remain consistently faithful over the days
ahead, you’ll literally walk into 2013 as a new person. And it won’t
be based on will power either. Don’t make resolutions this coming
year. Make plans and commit them to the Lord.