Christmas has come and gone once again and a new year is here. Now we have to make it through January. Ugh… We’ve just come off a “Christmas high” and now work or school or life can hit like a ton of bricks.

Do you like to make resolutions for the new year?

I have in the past, but I’m terrible at keeping them. So, last year, I tried something new to me.

I didn’t make any resolutions!

Crazy, right? Ok, maybe not so crazy. Many of you may not make resolutions either.

Last New Year’s Eve, I was in an airport waiting for a delayed flight. I was surrounded by strangers and longing for home. Yet, the Lord used that time to remind me that I still have the choice to find joy in a moment of weariness.

I picture the beginning of a new year as compared to my unusual New Year’s in an airport terminal. It is often a weary time and while there is often much to look forward to, I find myself tired and not wanting to make “resolutions” that I know I won’t keep long.

So, this year, I’m once again trying something new. I’m going to be focusing on a few things that I’d like to do differently, and I’ll be giving myself grace if I don’t do these perfectly.

I’m not going to call them resolutions, but rather “challenges” for myself in the coming year.

Do you ever pick a verse of the year for yourself or your family? My “challenges” for myself come from the verse I’ve chosen for this year:

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18


ot just when things are going the way I’d like, but always. Easier said than done! But, we have a God who loves us and longs to help us truly see the joy in every moment.


Not just on Sundays or before a meal, but all the time. I’m learning to see prayer more like an ongoing conversation or Facetiming with a friend. Always accessible and always present.


Our culture seems to focus on being thankful around Thanksgiving, but not as much the rest of the year. Thankfulness can turn into joy, even if it’s being thankful for simple things like a smile or running water.

There might be nothing new here to you at all. But what is new is this year. What you do with the time God gives you is up to you.

In a year from now, I want to be able to look back at this year and see that I’ve done all I can to “rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and give thanks in all circumstances.”

By doing these, I hope I’ll become just a little more like Christ. I know I won’t do them perfectly, but if I do my best, with His help, I’ll count this as an amazing year. 

College is a time for growing into who Christ made you to be! If you are looking for a place where you can grow academically and spiritually, UMHB would be a great fit for you! Check out our website for more information, or stop by any time for a campus visit to learn more.