The definition of “resolve” is “the firm determination to do something”. It’s been rattling around in my head as another year begins. In my mind, it’s different than making a resolution even though they’re cut from the same word base mold. Resolve has a bit of grit to it, a heavy dose of perseverance. Resolution has been watered down by our culture, making room in the backseat with lame excuses and crippling binges.

Resolve is seeing that the battle lines have been drawn and there is no retreat, no option but to attack the situation and not even entertain the possibility of surrender. Resolve understands that there are foes that are visible and perhaps even more that are unseen.

My resolve is a short list, but offers a direction, a path, a plan through the foray. Sitting on my writing stool gives me some time to ponder, strategize, and allow the resolve to rattle around undisturbed in my head. Here goes!

I resolve to influence young lives, more specifically 57 eighth-graders whose education and maturing has been been entrusted to me. It was a mission that came unexpectedly, but has challenged me to admit that being 68 years old is not an excuse, but an avenue for leading a flock, albeit a flock adorned with nose rings, various hair colors, and addictions to their iPhones.

I resolve to read 31 books in 2023, roughly divided into these categories: 5 history-based, 5 theology-based, 5 mysteries, 5 classics, 5 current events-based, 1 daily devotional, and 5 that are in that category called “Other”.

I resolve to take care of my physical condition. I know, I know that’s a little fuzzy. What I have in mind that needs to be “firmed up in my determination for” is 50 pushups and setups a day, some kind of daily movement exercise whether it be long walks, slow walks, or building up my cardio without destroying my knees and hips. I’ve discovered podcasts this past year that are able to develop my mind and spirit as I get my steps in.

Speaking of podcasts, I resolve to develop other avenues for my writing to take form, whether it be audiobooks, podcasts, YouTube reading times, or some other new bone for this old dog. I will finish the fourth book in the Red Hot: New Life in Fleming series this summer, maybe sooner depending on the amount of preparation I need to put into teaching my eighth-graders. Hopefully, I’ll begin Book 5, which I envision as being the finale, this summer. I will continue to write my Words From WW blog.

I resolve to invest in relationships: family, friends, students, teaching and coaching partners, the people at church. Those relationships are not obligations, but ways that my life is enriched and blessed.

I resolve to kiss and hug Carol every day, and when the opportunity arises hold her hand as we take walks around the neighborhood. As she encounters struggles with her eyesight, I resolve to keep her safe.

I resolve to be generous with my resources, my time, and my service. As we have been blessed (not just financially), we look to bless others.

I resolve to love people and treat each person with respect and dignity, not just those who are cut from the same belief system as me. Encountering all types of people and various life perspectives is not something that I feel threatened by, but rather helps me identify why it is I believe what I believe.

Well, there it is. I didn’t set out to make a list of ten things I will have resolve about, but that’s what it came to, kinda like the 10 Personal Commandments. I think i’ll make a hared copy of this and post it in my study at home to look at. Hopefully, it will not discourage me, but motivate me, especially as I realize I still need to get my pushups done for the day.

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