Well, I suppose I fall victim to that cycle as well (well, minus the alcohol). It's the new year, and I am faced with bowls of holiday candy I no longer want around, I'm gladly bidding good riddance to the Christmas tree and all the decorations, and the thought of sweets and rich foods disgusts me. I am ready to turn over to the next chapter, thankful for a fresh start. My new year goals are probably not that different than yours, from the serious to the mundane: Read more (especially the bible), exercise more (3-4 times a week at the gym), eat healthier (and less), take my vitamins regularly, whiten my teeth, simplify, love deeper and live more obediently unto Christ. Six large bags just went to the Goodwill and I've worked out three times since Jan. 2. I am motivated now, but I know that somewhere down the line, my resolve will fizzle. I will become less concerned about my resolutions. After all, I battle my lazy and unproductive flesh. I know I will be lamenting along with the apostle Paul sometime soon, "For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate." (Romans 7:15) If the apostle Paul saw himself that clearly, so should I.
Which brings me to the wonderful hope that someday I will be free of the struggle. Life, this life here on earth, will be over soon and I'll be in my eternal home thanks to what Christ has done for me! I have done nothing as a wretched sinner to earn this eternal reward, but Jesus' death on the cross allows God to see me as righteous and accept me into heaven! Is that not a glorious thought? Sometimes I wonder at the start of a new year, "will it be this year?" or as I'm taking the ornaments off the tree "will I be putting these on next year (or will I be in glory)?" I wonder when the time is appointed for my glorious homegoing. I know that only God knows this. Now don't get me wrong, I also agree with Paul that "to live is Christ and to die is gain." Wherever God wants me to be, I will be content and glad. I will continue to strive with hope.
I know someone who finished his earthly journey 8 years ago. My dear first born son Brady spent his last day on earth exactly 8 years ago today. January 4th, 2004 was the last day Brady had to battle sin, illness, and suffering. Early in the morning hours of January 5th, in the presence of Rich and myself, he peacefully slipped from earthly sleep to glory! He is now in his eternal home! How I rejoice! And yet how I envy him. Not a day goes by that I don't thank God for Brady's homegoing, and hope for mine.
Wishing you a new year filled with HOPE!