Recession-proof New Year Resolutions for 2011

Are New Year Resolutions really needed or are they just another meaningless distraction or valueless piece of season’s trivia we are accustomed to living with?  I tend to think that anything that provokes us to fresh choices is a golden opportunity for improvement and divine restoration. A recession-proof resolution helped Daniel to not just survive but be relevant, influential and thrive through several regimes of Kings – though a stranger in Babylon. Others are mute and refuse to take a stand when Elijah pleaded.

Daniel 1[8]  But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: I Kings 18[21] And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.

You can make a quality choice anytime but why not at this time – to go even higher with God to opt for the deeper spiritual life and rise above that which is carnal and shallow – with the help of the Holy Spirit and the guidance of the word of God. What does this choice for the consecrated life imply?

  • It suggests our sensual life must be daily mortified … crucified with Christ
  • Our imagination must be sanctified and purged by the washing of the word
  • Reasoning will receive enlightenment by communion and fellowship with God
  • Our mind renewed as Christ is enthroned and our will handed over to Him.
  • To shun worldliness i.e value-systems that align with the world’s view.
  • A few issues are pertinent for the one who resolves to come up higher.

    1. The spiritual life does not mean isolation or lack of activity – but a stronger resolve to be led not by the senses and human reasoning alone, but to lean more on God for direction.  Moses did not rest in the tabernacle…instead he stepped into his destiny of leadership. It was not easy.

    2. Resistance from the enemy of our soul will surely come in many forms.  i.e.

    a.  Compelling voices that the deeper life is not practical and is not for you

    b.  Easier and shorter-cuts that promise depth on a “broader” way will be tempting

    c.  Wrong choices with generous rewards attached – not easy to turn down – are presented.

    d.  Our intellect will be supplied with arguments that contradict scripture…our senses bombarded with thoughts to corrupt our mind and resist truth.

    3. But God will keep us as only He can – if we lean and depend on Him. Trusting Him alone.

    In 2011, you can make a firm choice for God.  When Elijah challenged the people to decide against Baal, we learn that they did not say a word.  Indeed it was easier to stay on the fence like many of us do today. Perhaps so that our lives would be easier and we would not be exposed to ridicule, persecution or called a hypocrite, legalist or labelled with worse tags. Make a recession-proof Christian Resolution in 2011.

    God stood for Daniel – even in the lion’s den – as he made a firm choice. God bless you as you make a fresh resolution of consecration to Him.

    Bode Ososami (blog author) released his 3rd book (now available) in December – The Majesty of God.

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    A Blessed House in 2010 or a Suicide Mission.

     

    January 1, 2010 – The New Year rolls in like any other day … another day that God has made for us to rejoice and be glad. We thank God for His mercies that we are still here to be of some service to Him who created us for His pleasure.  We especially thank God for the abortion of the attempt to blow up the aircraft bound for Detroit on the day we remember the birth of Christ.  May we witness more of His divine protection this year.

    The Recession is said to be progressively receding and while there already are unusual pockets of turnaround – most indicators, like unemployment, tend to be lagging and will take more time to reverse in our favour. We can expect the second half of 2010 to be better than the first. 

    While reflecting on the word of God I discovered some unusual scenarios of blessing I thought could encourage someone at the onset of the year – even in the uncertain times.

    II Samuel 6:1-9. David was in fear and discouragement over his mistakes and the bitter consequences he was reaping.  He was a great King who loved the Lord and meant well in seeking to bring the Ark (symbolising the presence of the Lord ) into the City of David.  But in doing so, he contrived a creative, modern and no doubt more exciting approach. God was incensed…soon Uzzah, who generously but naively lent a helping hand, was dead and David was confused…not knowing what next to do.

    How many bad situations have we brought upon ourselves through well meaning “creative disobedience” … a term that best describes our contemporary and “more correct” and practical interpretations of the word of God in a modern and enlightened era?  Has the Recession not been a consequence of unprecedented consumption and greed coupled with uncontrolled desire for gains fueled by self-serving Bible interpretations? We embraced shortcuts and discarded eternal truths for the poisonous but more easy to digest leaven of mammon.  A fearful David goes back to the scrolls…possibly ridiculed … just as today many mock the clinging or returning to old landmarks that served Paul, Peter and the early saints even up to the 1800s.  But David also needs help – someone reliable somewhere needs to house the Ark – now percieved as a fearful piece of furniture.  HELP WANTED … and no one is applying.

    Matthew 5 [5]  Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

    Obededom (meaning servant) is a meek Philistine in exile but now so loyal to David that he is circumcised in adult age and conscripted to be a storekeeper, musician, gateman, porter, servant (I Chronicles 15: 16-21 & 24-25) and perhaps any other odd job David wanted done.  Amongst 600 other Gittites that came with David from Gath – a fiercely loyal band of strangers (2 Samuel 15:13-23). It does not take David long to identify the best person to hold the Ark – someone tested who was so meek and would not so No – even at great personal risk – the Ark had already demonstrated sensitivity to Philistines (I Samuel 5). Previous experience with the Ark suggested this could be a dangerous assignment (I Samuel 6 ;19-20) – Indeed 50,070 men of Bethshemesh died just for peeping curiously into the Ark.

    I Chronicles 13[13]  So David brought not the ark home to himself to the city of David, but carried it aside into the house of Obededom the Gittite. [14]  And the ark of God remained with the family of Obededom in his house three months. And the LORD blessed the house of Obededom, and all that he had.

    But…for the next 3 months, blessings were storming on a meek , willing, obedient and loyal Obededom at the same time when David was afraid, confused, crying to God, seeking answers and consulting elders in enlightened forums to debate truths that were meant to be simply obeyed and not argued.

    Occasionally a perplexed and confused David must have enquired if Obededom was still alive…but instead he gathers that unusual blessings are raining on the House of Obededom the Gittite… a Philistine.

    David at last repents and corrects his ways and gets priests ( not professionals and performers) to carry the Ark on their shoulders – as God commanded…and with joyful praise out of the house of Obededom.

    This year someone will be unusually blessed…even in the early months of 2010. I will humbly advise all to return to ponder over the commanded word of God. These are commandments and not suggestions awaiting informed considerations.  In the year of the King of kings – some well intended approaches may prove suicidal …

    Hebrews 12[2]  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

    Ecclesiastes 5:[10]  He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity.

    Lord help us this year to worship, obey and serve you as you want to be served and like never before …and may sorrow be far from us and our joy be full.

    Amen

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