Friday, January 1, 2010

No More New Year's Resolutions

I never make New Year’s resolutions. I’m too hard on myself when I break them--which I always do. Then I end up feeling guilty, and that’s a waste of time. So I set goals instead, and post them on my bedroom wall, where I review them every couple of months to remind myself of what I’m shooting for. I have six month goals, one year goals, five- year goals, even lifetime goals. But I have noticed something about them over the years. They change.

It used to be important to me to look younger than I am, and be known as a classy lady. Now I just try to hide the wrinkles and gray hairs, and treat people with respect. I figure they may not notice the lack of ruts on my upper lip or the label on my purse, but they will remember if I make them feel special and important.

When I was younger, I based my singing and speaking success on how many compliments I received after the program. If someone snoozed while I was singing, I took it personally. I had actually bored them to sleep, how much closer to horrible can you get?

Then my focus changed from needing affirmation to needing to be genuine and help people know my loving Father. It’s fun to entertain. It’s more fun to know you have made someone’s day by lifting them up. If a person went to sleep while I was singing today, I’d silently chuckle and pray they’d have good nap!

I can’t name the date and time this radical change took place in me. I recall no magical moment in time when I heard God speak in thunderous tones: “You are focusing on the shallow. I herby change your heart, so you are more interested in character than image.”

My heart gained some depth when I started noticing fewer and fewer people around me who are genuinely happy and fulfilled. Those whose have a spring in their step and a light in their eyes, like themselves. They maintain a sweet, abiding relationship with Jesus. They are not as affected by their circumstances or the negativity all around them as they are their faith in the living God.

I don’t notice how that kind of people look; I just feel good when I’m around them. And I want to make other people feel that same goodness when they share the same spot in the universe with me. Therefore, I decided to focus on my attitudes instead of my achievements. It’s one of the lifetime goals…

Not that I won’t be still working on getting rid of wrinkles and grey hairs when I’m a hundred and two. But hopefully I’ll be so sweet by then no one will notice.


  1. what a great post! isn't it amazing how God grows our hearts as we grow in HIM? I used to seek my worth in what others thought of me and how many compliments I got on my looks, my kids, my cooking, baking etc....what an unhappy way it was to live! I thank God that he's grown me a little more each year to rest in what I know HE says and feels about me. THAT's a security and a peace I only could have dreamed of! I look forward to how God wants to grow my heart in 2010! Happy New Year!

    (p.s. I'm SO happy you loved your necklace. Diane forwarded me the picture. The necklace looks great but YOU are truly beautiful and radiant!)

  2. "Then my focus changed from needing affirmation to needing to be genuine and help people know my loving Father."

    This really hit home with me, Jeanette. I'm such a words of affirmation girl.

    Happy New year friend!

  3. You wrote this post about and for me!! Oh how I need to be reminded that it's not important how I look, what I want or if I pleased everyone, but that each person I meet experience the joy of the Lord in my words and actions. And to quote a book I just finished reading, "What would Jesus do?" Would He worry about His appearance, etc. or would He be concerned about ministering to everyone He met???

  4. Jen, I think all that - what you've discovered and changed over the years - is what class is all about, anyway. I absolutely believe you are one classy lady.

    Happy New Year! May 2010 be full and happy for you.

  5. Oh Jen, you are such a jewel! You continually inspire me to be a better ME! May God shine on you and be gracious unto you this year and EVERY year! You make Him smile!

  6. I want to be like that too! It's amazing what happens when we take our eyes off ourselves and be more aware of those around us (and our interactions with them).

    Happy New Year, Jen!

  7. I know what you mean about simply feeling good about people that have the right focus. I want to cause people to feel good. I know that has the potential to happen when I'm groovin' with God.

    Loved the integrity of this post.
    Happy New Year!
    ~ Wendy

  8. Jeanette:
    I agree with Katie, this is about me. How neat of you to notice these things. I have found myself thinking of the 'way I was' and realizing I needed to be more genuine 'back then'.

    Blessings on you and your efforts in the new year.

  9. Love this post. I'm right with you on this one. Right now, I just want to look my age and not older than I am. I love your cheerful outlook so much and I am moving in that direction too - finally. You look so sweet with your husband. Happy New Year!

  10. Jen, I thank God for you continually! You are a beautiful soul inside and out. Thanks for all you have added to my life in 2009, and what waits us ahead.

    God bless you.

  11. Hi Jen -

    Someone I know once said, "God gives us gifts not to spend on ourselves but to spend on others." You exemplify that statement.

    I'm blessed to be called your friend.


  12. Jen,

    What a fantastic post. You are truly a special lady! I know that everyone that comes in contact with you must leave a bit more fulfilled for the experience.

    Happy New Year.


  13. The change is starting to occur in me, but I've got a long way to go. Hoping your new year was great! :O)

  14. The change is starting to occur in me, but I've got a long way to go. Hoping your new year was great! :O)

  15. Great post! My goals for 2010: gain weight and start smoking. I think I can meet those goals! (Just kidding!) Have a God-directed New Year!

  16. I opened my blog today thinking, "No one blogged over New Year's; there might be one or two comments," only to see a wave of love and sweet blessings from you dear friends.

    I am overwhelmed by your kindness and grace. Thank you for being you. May the Lord give you all the desires of your hearts in 2010. May it prove to be your best year ever!

    Love you,

  17. Who could see past that radiant smile and God's love shining in your eyes anyway? Wrinkles? Gray hairs? Where?

    Personally, I'm past the age of being able to hide anything and have come to acceptance of that. It's not a bad thing -- it takes me less time to get ready in the mornings. :)

    Blessings to you!


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