Fresh-Start-Notebook blank page with pen Fresh-Start-Notebook blank page with pen

Most of us are tired of coming up with news words or phrases to describe 2020: trying, uncertain, difficult, tumultuous, unprecedented … I could go on.

Instead of looking for new and creative ways to describe the year that was, let’s look to the New Year—with a sense of purpose, renewal and newness.

With that in mind, here are three essential resolutions for 2021 … resolutions that will help us have a better year, whatever 2021 may hold!

1. Generosity

It’s easy to define generosity as simply giving something away. You donate clothes to the Salvation Army or money to the local food shelf. That’s definitely generosity, and something that’s critically needed in our world. “Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share” (1 Timothy 6:18, NIV).

But generosity is also about a spirit or attitude—a sense of purpose maybe. Being generous also includes assuming the best about others, aiming and working for their success, and discovering ways to extend the gospel into the lives of others.

What are a few ways you can embrace this generous spirit in 2021? With 2020 in the rearview mirror, a spirit filled with generosity will go a long way toward building the foundation for a better 2021.

2. Remain optimistic

It’s so much easier said than done—especially during a pandemic—but adopting and embracing a positive outlook is crucial to meeting the challenges we currently face.

By adopting a positive outlook, we can help shape our future. Scripture is replete with examples of remaining optimistic amidst life’s challenges—even those challenges that seem insurmountable.  

As Paul reminds us, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” (Romans 12:12, NIV, emphasis added).

Instead of lamenting the uncertainty of tomorrow, adopt an attitude of optimism … for God is still moving, still transforming lives, still bringing people into the Kingdom. 

The question is: What will your role be?

3. Plan big

It can be relatively harmless to plan big when everything is going well. However, how much more challenging is it to plan big when everything around us is filled with uncertainty? But that should be our goal.

 Our God is not a small God. He is a God of transformation. He is a God of meeting and overcoming challenges. And His plans for us and for His Kingdom don’t need time to rest.

So what are those big plans that have been stirring in your mind and spirit? What is God calling you to do? How is God leading you to the next step in your life, your ministry and for His Kingdom?

Whatever those are, it’s time to plan big and move forward.  

By adopting a lifestyle of generosity an attitude of optimism and a mindset of thinking big, we can play a role in transforming lives—including our own—in the next 12 months.

Are you ready?

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