Small Steps or Big Moves


In the first weeks of the New Year, what resolutions are you making?

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).

Will you set a New Year’s resolution this year? Or several? Maybe shoot for “14 goals in 2014”?

Sounds good, but I’ve noticed—based on personal experience—that resolutions often don’t work because we seem to put more energy into making them than in carrying them out. We often want different results in our lives, but we aren’t willing to make the necessary changes.

But whatever your goal, there’s always something you can do, from a small step to a big move. If you want to lose weight, for instance, you can give up your nightly bowl of ice cream—that’s fairly easy, right? Or you can sign up for Weight Watchers. You just have to know what you’re ready and willing to do.

If your goal is to do more to serve God and love your neighbor, the same principle applies. You already have what you need: a willing heart. Now, you just need to take a step. “God can’t steer a parked car,” to quote my former pastor.

To help you get started, here are some examples of big and small things you can do this year to fight poverty:

Simple: Buy a world map and post it where you will see it frequently, find countries mentioned in the news, and pray for people affected by dire poverty, war, or natural disaster.

Advanced: Look into how you can leave a donation to your favorite charity in your will.

Simple: Volunteer for a few hours at a local soup kitchen, food bank, or AIDS hospice.

Advanced: Sign up for a short-term missions trip with your church or an organization like Youth With a Mission.

Simple: Use your Facebook profile to share a cause you’re passionate about with your friends.

Advanced: Organize an effort in your church, campus, or with friends to write letters to Congress advocating for increased government funding for poverty alleviation.

Hopefully, some of these ideas will spark an idea for you. If not, keep looking, talking to other Christian servants, and praying for God’s direction.

What will your resolutions be?

Photo credit: Abby Stralsbroten/World Vision


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