For years, I pasted it on the first page of every blank book I was about to use for journaling: a little list of resolutions.
They look tame enough at first glance. But three or four of them are really radical!
Yet I set my face like flint to carry them out, and wow!…
I look at them now and think how they grew me, strengthened me, built faith. The radical ones, mainly. But I include all the first seven (and number ten) because, really, they worked together:
1- to rejoice in the Lord daily
2- to take time each day to [pay attention to] what He has to say to me [It’s there, clear, in scripture, and I know it!]
3- to write down some note of it, however brief
4- to respond to what He says, in words (through prayer) and through obedient/believing/trusting actions
5- to look only to Him for my needs: physical, spiritual, and emotional; then seeing what He provides through man and/or circumstances as just that: Him providing
6- to “not be utterly cast down” if I stumble in these resolutions, but to quickly correct my thinking and redirect my focus to the real Meeter of all my needs [I borrowed this approach from Jonathan Edwards’ own resolutions—really valuable!]
7- to give thanks to God in all things…
10- to look at my circumstances, daily, as blessings from God, as steering, correcting, and teaching mechanisms and as means to make me more equipped for understanding and ministering to others.
The Radical Resolves are the highly emphasized above, underlined and bold.
(Because I need to be bold with them.)
What makes them radical is our (my) bent not to live life this way. We obey the easy and convenient commands and not the ones that don’t fit with how we already do things. And why not? Because we aren’t really trusting God, but other things instead. We too often run everywhere else first for aid and advice, and to God only as last resort.
Faith is trust, and who or what I trust is the one I look to for help, comfort, wisdom and direction. And the advice I trust (read: have faith in)—that’s what I will follow.
Talking about these things is easy. In the doing of them, there lies the adventure!
And I promise, it is an adventure.
All these thoughts and words are stirring me…
to print out a fresh copy of these old resolutions, kept in a computer file,
to paste it onto the empty front page of my present journal,
[If you, dear reader, want to do the same with these, feel free to do so.]
to re-resolve the actions
and to do them!
This was how I learned (and am still learning)… to practice the Practice of Faith.
Related: Hard/Easy Faith