My column from this weekend’s parish bulletin:

new-year1I have a love-hate relationship with New Year’s resolutions.  On the one hand, I love the organized feeling it gives me to examine my life and promise myself and those I love to improve.  On the other hand, I hate failing.

I fail a lot.  Every year, no matter how small my resolution(s), I still seem to miss the mark.

This year, as I sit with a brand-new calendar in front of me, I can’t help but glance at the school supplies that are halfway through their school year.

In September, breathing crisp fall air, I find myself inspired by unsharpened pencils and the possibilities of blank notebooks.

Those pencils have been sharpened a few times, and a few have lost their erasers.  The notebooks have been scribbled in and the covers are crinkled and bent.

The pencils haven’t always been used for the purpose they were purchased, and the notebooks have been filled with doodles as much as with writing.  They’ve failed a bit in their resolutions too, haven’t they?

Maybe failing isn’t so bad.  Maybe I need that lesson in humility, that prodding that forces me to lay my pride in my Father’s hands.

Maybe, this year, I’ll resolve to try….perhaps I’ll try something God’s been asking of me or try to focus more on His will than on my lost desires.  Maybe I’ll try working out (again) or eating better (again).  And it’s possible I’ll fail (again).

One thing’s for sure:  if I’m letting God lead me, my resolution will start on the right foot.