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New Year's Revolution


January 12, 2011
We're two weeks into 2011, which means that by now many of us feel like big, fat failures. Fourteen days is plenty of time to blow whatever New Year's resolutions we might have made. Get that spending under control. No more junk food. Run 10 miles a day. Abs of steel!

I found several online statistics that put the success rate of New Year's resolutions somewhere around 10 percent. Maybe my resolution should be to stop reading depressing things on the Internet.

I've personally given up on the idea of making significant New Year's resolutions. I only do silly ones now, one of which I'll share with you in a few weeks. I've broken too many promises to myself over the years to put much stock in my determined resolve.

Why am I supposed to have more discipline on Jan. 1 than I do on Dec. 31? Is there some astrological convergence that occurs when the big, shiny ball drops in Times Square and mystically bestows self-control on the masses? Does Ryan Seacrest's hair have magical powers? If you play "Auld Lang Syne" backward does it say, "I will not eat Krispy Kreme doughnuts. I will exercise every day. I will be patient with my spouse?"

Perhaps.

But, if so, I've never benefited from this New Year's magic. I'm still the same guy in January that I was in December. No, for me, I need something more drastic. What I need is not another New Year's resolution, but a New Year's revolution. I need a coup staged by God's Spirit against my own worst enemy: me. What I need is not more empty promises to myself. What I need is Someone bigger, stronger, smarter and "gooder." I need Someone outside of me to come in and change me from the inside out. I need Someone with the power to actually make me into the person I'm created to be.

This new year, I'll leave making resolutions to the U.N. As for me and my heart, I need nothing short of a total regime change. It's time to put Someone else in charge. As John the Baptist said, "Jesus must become greater. I must become less." His power is made perfect in my weakness.

And with a simple prayer of "Help me to change," the revolution begins.

Jason Byerly, a 1990 graduate of Crawford County Junior-Senior High School, is the children's pastor at Southland Christian Church near Lexington, Ky. He and his wife have two daughters. For more from Byerly, visit www.jasonbyerly.blogspot.com.

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