Advice for the New Year – Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
– Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV

We have a new year coming tomorrow, and New Year’s Resolutions are common for many people. The pastor’s sermon this past weekend used this passage in looking forward to a new year. And it does seem to give some timely advice for the follower of Jesus who is looking to faithfully follow him in the new year. This passage can be broken up into three resolutions with a single result.

The Resolutions

First, “trust in the Lord with all your heart”. Trust him, not your family, your bank account, your job, or any other thing. Trust God with all that you are, and all that you have. Yes, trust can be hard. It involves turning everything over to him. But it is what we are called to do.

Secondly, “lean not on your own understanding”. This may be the hardest thing for me. While I acknowledge that my understanding is flawed; whether of the Bible, God, humanity, creation, etc., I still have a tendency to make it a foundation stone. I ‘lean’ on it for support. It impacts all I do. Instead I need to lean on the truth of God’s word and the guidance of his Spirit.

And lastly, “in all your ways submit to him”. How might I go about submitting to the Lord? A good start is to obey the instructions in his word. Know the Bible and do what it says. Submission is hard, especially in a culture that values individuality. But it is essential in being a successful Christ follower.

The Result

And if I will do those three things, I can count on him to “make my paths straight”. He will direct me, and help me to be successful. Not measured as human success, but success in the kingdom. To have a good 2019, trust in the Lord, don’t depend on my own understanding of things, and submit to him in everything. Together they will make up a winning formula for the new year.

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