However, so many times we focus so much on resolutions that we think "If this were this way, then I'd be happy." Especially when it comes to monetary things or just money in general. "If I made 40k instead of 25k, then life would be better." "If I had a 46" TV instead of this 36" TV, then I'd be content.
I'm going to admit that I'm not always content. However, look at all the great things I had in 2011: an almighty God who loves me, a job I enjoy, amazing friends, fantastic family, a great church family, a house I can afford, good meals, an opportunity to work with energetic kids and so much more. 2011 left me with a lot of things. I'm rich beyond imagination. Do I make $100,000/year? No. Do I make $30,000/year? No. But I'm richer than 98% of the world and have never been in want. I have a great life.
But for many more money and more stuff is the measuring stick for happiness. Let me share a quote I stole from Craig Groeschel, who stole it from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Charlie's grandpa is trying to convince Charlie not to sell his golden ticket for money when he says:
"There's plenty of money out there. They print more every day. But this ticket, there's only five of them in the whole world, and that's all there's ever going to be. Only a dummy would give this up for something as common as money. Are you a dummy?"
I have a great life. The things I listed above as my blessings are rare. Only a dummy would give that up for something as common as money. I'm not a dummy.
But we idolize money. We put money and the insatiable desire for stuff ahead of those we love and most importantly God. In fact, the average American Christian loves money much more than God. The average Christian in the U.S. gives about 2% of his/her income toward helping people and advancing the Kingdom of God. (Courtesy Weird by Craig Groeschel page 86)
Go ahead and make your New Year's Resolution. Go ahead and do something to make 2012 better than 2011, but if you haven't made a New Year's Resolution let me make a suggestion. In 2012 resolve to be content with what you have and resolve to have an unquenchable thirst for God. Be satisfied with the life you have been given, but don't stop running after the God who gave that life to you.
Lastly, if you don't have a relationship with God resolve to know Him. That is the greatest New Year's Resolution you could ever had; I'd call that The New Life Resolution.
Enjoy your New Year's Eve. Reflect with contentment on 2011. Resolve to be content with what you have and resolve to have an unquenchable thirst for God today.