I’m really not a fan of New Year resolutions. I’m kind of more of a U2 kinda girl: nothing really changes on New Year’s Day.
Still…the world sees January as a clean slate, so why not make it a time to embrace new things? I just know, that for me, unless I seek God’s help, I can’t keep a promise to myself for anything.
So. This morning, one of our church elders gave the word during the service, and he basically read us several passages about what it means to be a real Christian. These verses from Romans 12 really stuck out to me as good things to work toward in 2017.
Note that it’s all from Romans 12: 9-21, in case you want to read it in a different translation. I’m sharing from The Message, because I sometimes prefer the way it sounds. I also separated some verses into two bullet points because I think they each deserve their own emphasis.
So with that disclaimer, here’s a list of 21 ways to be a genuine Christian this year:
- Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it.
- Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good.
- Be good friends who love deeply.
- Practice playing second fiddle.
- Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame.
- Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant.
- Don’t quit in hard times. Pray all the harder.
- Help needy Christians.
- Be inventive in hospitality.
- Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath.
- Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down.
- Get along with each other.
- Don’t be stuck-up.
- Make friends with nobodies.
- Don’t be the “great somebody.”
- Don’t hit back.
- Discover beauty in everyone.
- If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody.
- Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.”
- If you see your enemy hungry, buy that person lunch, or if he’s thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness.
- Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.