A New Year is upon us, and that means it’s time to make that list of New Year’s Resolutions. We will pledge to eat less, exercise more, spend less, save more and, of course (my favorite), go to church/pray/read the Bible more. Typically, January is a time to be introspective and explore ways in which we can improve ourselves. Fitness and weight-loss centers love this time of the year, as do writers of motivational and self-help books. Self-improvement is an admirable goal, but this year consider a different kind of resolution. Instead of looking inward this year, why not reach out?
What if, for 2019, everyone resolved to do something to improve someone else’s life?
Those who are concerned about poverty can resolve to serve lunch in a soup kitchen once a month or offer professional services (medical, accounting, legal, mental health) for free to organizations who help the homeless get back on their feet. If cancer has touched your life, you might commit to running (even if you’re not a runner) in an event to raise money for research. If you are concerned about the plight of immigrants, the LGBTQ+ community or people with disabilities, get involved in an advocacy group. If you have been thinking of opening your home to a foster child, perhaps 2019 can be the year it happens.
Not able to actually get out and do something? You may not be able to travel to Haiti or Yemen or Honduras to help the people there, but you can pledge a portion of your income each month to relief aid. You may not be able to drive, but once a week you can call or send a letter to someone who is sick or lonely or grieving. If there is an issue that seems beyond any help you can offer, you can commit to praying about the problem daily.
There is so much good to be done in the world, it’s easy to get caught up in the possibilities and never end up doing anything. Just pick something. Pick something specific. Commit to doing one thing and make it happen.
If you need the accountability, put your commitment to making someone else’s life better in the comments, and then let us know how it’s going.
Don’t be overwhelmed by the needs of this world. Live out the Starfish Story and make a difference one person at a time. Tell your friends. Start today. It’s the best kind of resolution, because when we make other’s lives better, our own lives can’t help but be improved. May 2019 be a blessed year for one and all.