How to Live a Better Story in 2016

jesus

We all want to live better stories, don’t we? I know I do. Part of discerning your new story is looking back on your past and figuring out destructive patterns that led you down frustrating paths. And it’s also helpful to celebrate the wins, too. It’s time to take your spiritual pulse.

Look back over the last year. Ask yourself seven questions:

  1. What is one strong area of growth I experienced?
  2. How was I selfish?
  3. What relationship do I have the most frustration about?
  4. What relationship surprised me in a positive way?
  5. What is my biggest regret from 2015?
  6. What am I proudest of from last year? Why?
  7. In light of last year, what do I want to change about myself in 2016?

To change your story and live a better story, it’s quite simple. You need Jesus. You can’t walk like Jesus in your own strength. You can’t change your heart. You can’t bootstrap yourself, at least in the long term. You can’t rewrite old patterns.

That might sound depressing, but it’s actually quite helpful. Why? Because of this: “Growth comes from God, to those with surrendered, yielded hearts.” I wrote that in my book, Everything.

Want a new story? Surrender. Give those difficult relationships to Jesus and let Him take control. Let go of your need to control—even your own relationship with Jesus.

Here’s a free ebook to help you get started.

newstorywithshadowWe need to realize that growth comes simply from being rightly connected to Him. Remember Jesus’ scary, oft-forgotten words: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).

Nothing.

Nada.

Ne rien. (That’s French!)

No matter what language you say it in, it still amounts to zero.

Want a new story? Want to stop repeating the plotlines from the past? Then give up everything. Ask Jesus to help you. It’s simple, but difficult. Beautiful, but risky.

Mind if I Pray for you? Jesus, I have regrets about my story last year. Some things didn’t go as I hoped, and I didn’t always handle things well. I want to change. I need a new plot in 2016, but I know if I am the main character in my story, I’ll just repeat the old one. So would You be the hero this year? I give You permission to write an adventure. I take my hands off all the things I love to control, and I give you the pen. Grab it and write something beautiful. Amen.