Through Him Who Gives Me Strength

Through Him Who Gives Me Strength

I can do all this through Him who gives me strength. —Philippians 4:13

Click Here to Read Today's Scripture: Philippians 4:10-13

Many of us take advantage of the new year to make fresh starts or recommit to neglected goals: Begin that exercise routine we've been talking about for months. Study the Bible more regularly. Be more patient with the kids. Pay off debts and live cash-only. Nothing's wrong with New Year's resolutions, but too often they remain just that. Next thing you know, Easter is here and the running shoes are still in the corner looking at us with raised eyebrows. Or the credit card is still in the wallet "just in case." A number of sources indicate that about 80% of people abandon their New Year's resolutions by February. Some also offer tips for increasing one's chance for success, most of which rely on willpower.

Proverbs 3:5-6 offers a much better way: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Because of our fallen nature we are all susceptible to err. Even the Apostle Paul had to confess, "I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out” (Romans 7:18). Indeed, not in his own strength. In Philippians 4:12-13, however, Paul asserts that because he relies on God in every situation, good or bad, "I can do all this through Him who gives me strength."

Whether our goal this year is to start a good habit or quit an undesirable one, let us rely fully on God’s power to work in us, making the change from inside out.

Reflection: What habits do you wish to develop or quit this year? How can you be more deliberate about inviting God into it?

Prayer starter:

Lord, thank you for new beginnings. Give me the wisdom and faith to lean on your strength each day in this new year and always.

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