"I'd do ANYTHING to look like that....well, except eat right and exercise!"
Now, before you click away thinking this is yet another New Year's Resolution Healthy Tip blog post, hang with me here, because Billy's statement actually resonates with many of us, regardless of the object/goals/dreams or just wishful thinking we are accustomed to jotting down this time of year.
Osmosis. I wish it were more common that it is--especially regarding growth in many areas of my life. If becoming physically fit with rock-hard abs could happen by osmosis, I'd begin saving my dollars to be the first in line to purchase it! Wouldn't it be nice to become smarter without having to read or study or take tests? I would also love to become wealthy without really having to work too hard. I'd love to be able to run in a marathon without having to put in those laborious hours of training. I want to become fluent in sign language and Spanish....by osmosis. And yes, become wise and spiritually sound like King Solomon and have the patience of Job just by wishing for it.
I think many of are wishing our lives away while we never make plan one, or even a feeble attempt to move toward a goal we'd like to meet.
What do you REALLY want?
If you're like me, anything I REALLY want, I will try to get it. And I don't meet try as in "wish" I'd get it, and mean I will plan and make the attempt to have whatever it is in my hands. (Think, Peanut Buster Parfait from the DAIRY QUEEN. It may be late, I may be tired, but if the mood strikes, and the craving begins, I will get up off the sofa, scrape up some money, get in my car and drive to purchase one.)
Why do so many fail at keeping resolutions they pledge to keep to start the new year? Or why will many avoid making them at all? I believe it's because we never plan to move toward our goals. We don't want to invest in the dream. We don't want to train our bodies or minds or spirits. We want these wonderful things to happen to us by osmosis.
So, with that said..what is it that you want? What do you really want? Write it down, then write down a few steps that will get you closer to getting what you want. Then, DON'T JUST STAND THERE, DO SOMETHING!
FOR YOUR BODY
Diet and Exercise
If you have the desire to be physically fit, obviously, some sort of exercise will be required to achieve that goal. Find a plan that you would enjoy. Some enjoy the gym. Call or local one, and a least visit once and see if it is doable. Others enjoy group classes like ZUMBA or SPINNING or water aerobics. Others prefer walking. Or home exercising with a DVD.....whatever it is, make the first step toward it. Sign up for the class. Purchase new sneakers, or dumbbells, or the DVD....then actually SHOW UP! You will be one step closer to becoming fit!
If eating right is your goal, make out your grocery list that includes many more fruits and vegetables. Don't purchase the sweets or sodas or bags of chips, or whatever may be your downfall food. Look up some healthier recipes from healthy food you actually like... make it possible and convenient to stick with healthier eating by actually having healthy food within reach!
FOR YOUR MIND
One of the best things you can do for yourself is to educate yourself. This may include formal/higher education, but also READING and learning about things of interest will enhance your life, makes life more interesting (and you'll be more interesting also). I ask alot of questions. I GOOGLE for many answers, I then may purchase a book to find out more on the subject, or sign up for a class that gives me more knowledge. I love to learn!
The local library houses thousands of free books on every subject imaginable. The Internet has videos you can watch to learn how to do something you've been wanting to learn to do, or if you are an audio/visual learner, on a video on a certain subject matter will benefit you.
Sign up for ONE CLASS at a local community college. One class will allow you more time to focus on the subject and is much more affordable. Most colleges offer online courses for those unable to go to the campus for classes. You may find that you really enjoy the subject and will desire to learn more, or decide to earn a degree in the field of your choice. There is so much more to learn. Don't limit yourself regardless of your age or background.
FOR YOUR SPIRIT
First Things FirstStart at the beginning here. The starting point is at the feet of Jesus. Come humbly before Him. Be honest about your situation. Tell Him your heart's desires. Ask forgiveness of Him and thank Him for the sacrifice He made on your behalf- dying on the cross for your sins and cleansing you from all unrighteousness. Ask for strength. His strength to overcome. Lay your burdens down at his feet. Allow His Holy Spirit to lead, guide and direct you from this day forward.
BIBLE READINGFist of all, Bible reading is NOT boring or drudgery. We are unlocking answers to the many questions that arise in our life. In addition to the greatest plan of Salvation and eternal life, there is unlimited wisdom to be gleaned for our day to day lives. It draws us closer to our Creator and we listen to hear His voice as we read the words He inspired.
You can start a daily bible plan, like "reading the bible through in a year" , but sometimes that becomes overwhelming for some, and it causes them to quit altogether, Some like to begin the new year by reading a chapter in Proverbs each day (since there are 31 of them).
I like to begin in Matthew, and reread the life and times of Jesus while he walked among us. I like to see how HE acted and reacted to those around him. The believers and unbelievers. You may actually be surprised when you read it in context.
Joining a BIBLE STUDY in a small group is also beneficial. Some are held in the church in Sunday School classes or mid-week services, others are held in the homes. Small group studies are very beneficial as they help to form friendships and bonds and relationships among fellow believers. Something that we will find more important in the upcoming days. We are able to bounce questions/ideas/answers off each other and gain fresh perspectives. It also helps us commit to reading and studying and gives food for thought for our daily lives. Call a local church to find if there are any you would be interested in attending.
A devotional book is a great way to begin your quest into the Word of God. They are a great way to begin your day and start your "conversation/meditation" with Him. I recommend "JESUS CALLING" and MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST, but here are countless good ones. Make a visit to your local Christian bookstore . Ask their opinion as well. If the price is too steep, check out the same book on Amazon.com
CHURCH ATTENDANCEI cannot tell you the many benefits of finding a local church body to become a part of. In addition to hearing the word of God preached through a spiritual leader who devotes himself to prayer and reading of the Word and offers an inspired and fresh perspective, the fellowship of believers is so important. There is strength in numbers! Prayer when needed, visitation to hospitals, prisons, clothing rooms, feeding programs, Seniors groups, youth ministries, Bible schools, ,etc., are all a part of this beautiful family of God who meet together frequently to strengthen those ties that bind. To attend as a family, and become a part of a local body will strengthen you as well. You will learn alot about the Word of God, loving each other as family, and persevering.
A PERSONAL RELATIONSHIPThe best thing you can do for yourself, is to develop that personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Just as our relationships here on earth require time spent and sacrifice on our part, we must choose to spend time talking to Him, consulting Him on issues and decisions (through prayer and reading His word) in order to strengthen that relationship and become more like Him. it does NOT happen by osmosis. It is a commitment. And you be be thrilled with the outcome of this commitment. Unlike other things we commit ourselves to that drain us physically and emotionally, this commitment offers strength and REST! Jesus said, Come to me all you who are weary and heavy-burdened, and I will give you rest." He goes on to tell us to learn of Him, as we yoke ourselves to Him.
Regardless of where you find yourself lacking, you must make a plan to move toward your goal. Don't just WISH things would be different in 2013, PLAN for things to change! You can do this!