Many of us will try to restart our physical and financial goals in 2018, but the new year is also a great time to revitalize our spiritual lives. Here are a few spiritual resolutions to inspire your goal setting:
- Have a daily conversation: Whether it’s with a coworker, stranger, or family member, set a goal to have an actual conversation (beyond “how are you?”) once a day. Spirituality reorients us outside of our own self-obsession–and there’s no better way to practice that than talking to someone else. When you feel the temptation to slip into small talk, ask about someone’s passions, ask what brings them joy, learn about their life story. Take a few moments each day to recognize the humanity in those around you.
- Try net-zero buying or scheduling: This year, every time you add a new regular commitment to your schedule, try to let go of a commitment of similar length; alternatively, try to recycle or donate something for each new purchase you make. Keeping a personal Sabbath, practicing self-care, or living simply aren’t easy, but these are practical steps to start managing your schedule and possessions–and find time and room for higher priorities.
- Make a commitment: Rituals give us a spiritual emergency preparedness plan of sorts. We practice the fire drills so that when the panic of actual smoke and flame overtake us, we might remember where the exit is — or at least which direction to crawl. It doesn’t matter what spiritual resolutions you make (to start a new spiritual discipline, join a small group, or volunteer), what matters is that you commit to them; think of spiritual resolutions as a new ritual that you will practice daily/weekly/monthly.
- Don’t go it alone: Like any habit, we do better with a friend. Whatever spiritual resolutions you choose, share your goals with a friend. Check in about how you’re doing, volunteer together, set a weekly time to talk about what you’re reading. Immanuel has lots of great small groups to support you–try one out this year (we even have great spiritual growth opportunities during the week).
Billy Kluttz works as the Evening Service Coordinator at Immanuel (5:30 pm on Sundays). Originally from North Carolina, he is a graduate of Wesley Theological Seminary. He loves college basketball, country and folk music, and all things southern. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.