Recently, I read this question on Facebook: that during this time when we have been stuck by circumstance, have you become a chunk, a drunk, a hunk or a monk? I laughed out loud when I read it, but it also pointed out where many people’s interests went when they felt they couldn’t manage life and just: stuff. I thought there might have been a couple of other (fun?) lists too: Have you become lean, mean, clean, porcine or libertine? Or maybe: crazy, hazy, lazy and “daz-y?”
You see where I am going here—we are all a lot of things and mixtures of many things—no one is all one thing, but where is our primary, personal focus? Do we allow events to shape our change, or are we making conscious choices about who we are in this world? Last weekend we celebrated “The Baptism of the Lord” and we were reminded of our Baptismal promises (resolutions). Fr. Kevin (this past weekend) talked about Baptism as a gateway; we are called to “enter in” to those promises we made.
Maybe before too much time passes we should revisit our (many) resolutions, “tweak” them for success, check them for value, and prioritize them in our behavior… I, too, struggle with weight, not enough regular exercise, hoping to gain a “schedule” or habit of regular and positive choices. What is most important first? Health, of course, work and organization (goes without saying)… But here are some resolutions that might help you start or re-start in a list for 2021. They may help you in the regular, usual stuff we strive for every year.
RESOLVED: that God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit will be the primary objects of my love and devotion in this New Year; and that Holy Scripture will have a regular place in my life for the sake of grasping the nature of God and understanding His heart and will for humanity.
RESOLVED: that my fellow human beings will be treated with respect, dignity, and justice in all situations of my personal, social-political and professional life, and that I will exhibit sensitivity to the needs and desires of people around me so that their lives can be better and happier because of my presence and my choices.
RESOLVED: that love, (understood as unselfish care for others), will become the benchmark of my life and all its relationships; and that righteousness will be my daily and passionate pursuit as I try to speak, act, and relate in ways that consciously imitate Jesus Christ.
RESOLVED: that my faith will be informed and guided by Holy Scripture above my own inclinations, desires, self-centeredness, selfishness or a tendency at self-justification; that the Kingdom of God will be a practical concept for me in 2021 as I try to do my part to nudge the world back toward Eden for heaven's sake.
RESOLVED: that 2021 will be a year of (pandemic-safe) adventure in which I seek out new friends, learn new skills, and contribute to new causes that are worthwhile. while I try to live a lifestyle of peace. It is time to replace the frenetic worry and hectic pace of life that only frustrates me and tends to annoy others!
RESOLVED: that hope, built on the faithful promises of God, will dominate any tendency I have to carry pessimism and gloom into the lives of others; that joy will accompany me and flow through me to people who live in a world that too often fosters melancholy, and seems to revel in negatives, cruelty and sin.
In January, or March, or September, in any new start these declarations of intent carried through by us would make a difference that would make all the difference in this field of souls. Today’s Psalm Response is: “Here am I, O God, I come to do your will.” We should make resolutions that support our faith—a faith based in love and mercy, kindness and justice, compassion and care of each other. My guess is that maybe all the rest would fall into place…
Keep singing in your hearts!