Put on Love

New Year, New Resolutions, right?  I was thinking the other day about what things I could commit to doing  this year.

Floss every day.
Jog with the kids.
Rely less on processed foods.
Learn a foreign language.
Start journaling with an actual pen and paper.
Turn off the tv.
Drive the speed limit every once in a while.
Stop yelling.
Spend less time on the computer.
For goodness sake, stop eating so dang many cookies.

Those are great goals, don't you think? 

My dad is capable of making a list like that and following through with it by what appears to be sheer force of will (a trait he seemingly inherited from his father), I'm not quite so disciplined.  But, then again, they might have a little Counseling on their side.  These are two godly men, who have, without a doubt, exemplified Philippians 3:14 in my life - that is, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."  It's a nice reminder that the burden doesn't rest solely on my shoulders to follow through.  I've got the best cheerleader, encourager, and Counselor I can think of.

This is how my resolutions usually go - I make a list.  I start out with great momentum.  The lists consume me.  I get discouraged by how little I'm accomplishing.  I fizzle.  I get sad.  I rewrite the list.  And, instead of making newer, more attainable goals, I end up with a bigger, not-necessarily-better list.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

This year, I'm doing something different.  I'm not making a list.  I have some goals I'd like to reach, things I'd like to do, places I'd like to see, but I've determined to do something even greater than anything I can write on a list.

I've decided to put on love.

I've spent the better part of my life preoccupied with rights and wrongs.  I'm not going to apologize for that.  I do still wholeheartedly believe in absolutes.  What I will apologize for is caring more about the acts of right and wrong than the act of love.

This is the year.

I resolve to love.  Regardless.

Because that's what Jesus is.

I say this with conviction, yet knowing that I will fail.  Daily.  I'm not determining to fail, but this is an unattainable goal.  I want it to be.  I want to constantly strive to love more and love better - to be more like Jesus, every single day.

It feels great to start out the new year this way.  And it feels even better knowing that when (not if) I fail, God's mercies are new each morning.  I don't have to wait until 2014 for a fresh start.  Phew.
So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.  Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.  Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.  Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.  Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.  Colossians 3:12-17
I'll start at home...loving on my husband and my babies.  They're easy.

Wishing each and every one of you a blessed 2013!


Sharon said...

Perfect resolution, Jennie - as it serves as the perfect *umbrella* for everything else we can hope to accomplish this year.

Love on your family - and I'll love on mine.

And I might even learn how to love myself a little better, too.


Jennie said...

Amen...especially to the loving yourself part. Me too! Thank you for your always-encouraging words!

Debbie said...

Just perfect, Jennie. And thanks to you, I have a passage for a future Sunday School lesson. On of my all time favorite verses is just a little down the page in that same chapter.

But I have to say one thing. You yell?? Really, I can not for the life of me picture that.

And btw, I was one of the people praying your family safely home. Was glad to get the text that you are back in Dixie.

Debbie said...

That's ONE of my all time favorite verses...Coffee. I need coffee.

Jennie said...

Oh my goodness, do I yell. It's embarrassing. And not effective. And DEFINITELY something I need to work on. Thanks, always, for your prayers, Mrs. Debbie. (Is your favorite...Colossians 3:23?)

Anonymous said...


Sam is not only super dad you are super mom and an inspiration to my family. Keep loving those wonderful kids,

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