January 2, 2020

Now that we are in the second day of 2020, most people who are going to make New Year’s resolutions have already made them. And by now, a few have already been broken. For me, settling on a resolution was a real struggle.

At first, like many people, I thought about getting in better physical condition. This was to be for better health and to fit into the clothes that I have been hanging onto for years but haven’t been able to wear. But as I looked in the mirror, the first thought to run through my mind was, “Why mess with perfection?” That New Year’s resolution was not going to work.

Next I thought about trying to improve my skills as a preacher, teacher, and counselor. But again, why mess with perfection?

Then I thought about whether I should resolve to be a better, more thoughtful husband. But again — well, you know already.

After thinking about it for some time, I realized that while I’ve always considered my humility to be my greatest asset, I should probably focus on being even more humble and less arrogant.

I am convinced that the root of sin is arrogance, which is defined as assigning too much importance to self.

When I operate out of arrogance, it doesn’t matter what God thinks or wants for my life. I am more important than God so I choose my own path of narcissism and destruction.

When I become arrogant, the suffering of those around me is of no consequence. I’ve got more important things to do than to try and lighten someone’s heavy load. They don’t matter.

When I operate out of arrogance, I walk on the wide path of Satan that leads straight to hell instead of staying on Jesus’ narrow path that leads to life, peace, and joy.

And because arrogance is the root of my sin, I cannot blame other people or circumstances for the self-consuming choices I make. It’s my fault alone. It’s all on me. This is not what God intended for my life.

Peter said it best: “Humble yourselves. Then, under God’s mighty hand, so that he will lift you up in his own good time. Leave all your worries with him, because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:6-7)

God loves you so much he would rather die than live without you. God has a plan for your life. This means accepting the only way out of the trap of arrogance. It’s humility.

Prayer: Dear Gracious Heavenly God, create within me a pure heart. Let me live in humility and joy. Forgive my sins. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Put your hand in God’s and let him lead you home. It is the best way.

Also, just for the record, my New Year’s resolutions are to get in better shape, be a better pastor, and be the husband that Shannon deserves. I’ve got a long way to go.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.

Tom Robbins