It is January 23, 2013. For many people it is the time the rubber meets the road for those New Year’s resolutions. Will they become life-changing habits or will we gently say to ourselves, “good try”? I honestly didn’t make any resolutions this year because I am praying that the resolution I made in 2012 will be at the forefront of my mind until I no longer glimpse Glory but live in His presence. At the end of 2011, I sat with a group of the most beautiful Bible study partners a woman could be blessed with and listened as one after the other chatted about what they resolved to do differently in the upcoming year. Now from the outside, you would think that every one of these ladies had it so together that they would simply need to keep doing whatever it is that they were doing to be satisfied in life. And yet, every single one ached to change. To improve. To be different.
Some described the changes they were after with embarrassed giggles and others with firm statements. “I’m going to take all that laundry off my treadmill and really use it this year!” “I’m pulling all those sticky notes out of my datebook and getting my schedule under control.” “This will be the year I actually read through the Bible without skipping Leviticus!” And the list of do’s and don’ts flowed through the room. But no matter how it was stated or what area was being scrutinized, it was clear that the resolve to pursuit change was in the air. Believe me, I had my own list as long as my arm, but as I sat there listening and in the days that followed I began to ponder the concept of resolve.
If you look up resolve in the dictionary, one of the definitions offered is: a firm determination. And if you will let your mind wander to the last time you resolved to do something, you’ll see that the definition is accurately descriptive. Let your mind’s eye glance at your determined posture as you contemplate the change. Your eyes are focused. Your jaw is set and your head is slightly tipped forward to take the brunt of any obstacle that might be encountered. You Sister, are firmly determined to do the thing!
The truth is, rather we give voice to it or not, everyone on the planet is living a life of resolve. We are each engaged in the pursuit of something. It looks different on different people, but it’s there. Not only is it there, but it drives every decision and every investment of our time, energy, and resources. So the challenge God put out to me, and the one I would like to share with you is: What if, rather than pursuit the what of life, we resolve to pursuit the Who and allow Him to determine the what?
What might we experience if we resolve to know God better and ask for His blessing of wisdom and revelation to do just that (Ephesians 1:17)? Where might we go if we resolve to submit to His authority and trust Him for all the outcomes in our lives (Proverbs 3:5-7)? Will we do it perfectly never removing our gaze from Him? No, but we can depend on God to bring beautiful things from our firm determination to seek His face (Psalm 37:23-24). Our shortcomings do not take our God by surprise. In fact, He was well aware of them when He “determined the time and exact place” (Acts 17:26) our imperfect resolve would be displayed for His glory. And with full knowledge of our less-than-moments, He planned to bless those with eyes to see (Matthew 13:16) with glimpses of His glory.
Why am I so confident of this? Because God has been demonstrating His RESOLVE to reveal His glory to His children since He began time and He will close our chronos with a fresh revelation of Himself. It is who He has been and who He will be. The Great I AM does not change ( Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8). Since we exist somewhere between Jude and the closing verse of Revelation, we can be certain that His resolve to be seen applies to us every bit as much as it did to the Israelites and the Apostles. Beloved, God has chosen you as His child and has woven you into the world timeline. He will not hide from you or change His mind concerning you. And if we will lay all else aside and resolve to love Him and pursuit Him with all we are, I believe He will meet our very ordinary efforts with the very extraordinary–Himself.
This has been the desire of my heart for the last year and God has shown this ordinary woman more than someone like her ought to see. His faithfulness to Himself and His promises have astounded me and He has amazed me for my sake over and over again. And in my imperfect resolve to pursuit the Who, I have seen His Glory unfold in the Most Holy Place and I have been assured that I am welcome to dwell there. Yes, the boundary lines have fallen for us in pleasant places (Psalm 16:6) and if we will resolve to live there with our eyes wide open, we will, without a doubt, glimpse Glory. For the Glorious One has guaranteed that we, even in our imperfection, who seek hard after Him will not be disappointed.
I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you,
not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.
When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen.
When you come looking for me, you’ll find me.
Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else,
I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed.
Jeremiah 29:11-14 (The Message)