There is always talk of New Year resolutions at this time of year. If you can make them and keep them, you are well ahead of the norm.

If you are like me, making those resolutions is futile. To lose weight, to exercise, to get out of debt, those are great goals. But after of couple of weeks of real life, they become totally unsustainable.

I have a different idea. Let’s take a few minutes to jot down some of the biggest wins from last year; things that you are truly grateful for: Kind actions, forgiving attitudes, caring moments, loving hugs, anything that encouraged you.

List specific incidents that inspired you: A visit when you were lonely, a ride when you were stranded, pulling weeds when you were exhausted, or repairing a fence when you were overwhelmed. Then post your list on your fridge or your mirror. Read your list every day.

Keep your eyes peeled. Look for people you know, or even strangers, who could benefit from one of your encouragements. Then pay it forward. Bless different people with one or more of the encouragements you received last year.

Be prepared to reap the benefits. Your attitude will soar. Your relationships will expand. Your life will acquire more joy. And your reputation will improve. I can’t predict perfection; after all we are human. But this will go a lot further to making us more like Jesus.

“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.” — Philippians 2:3-5 (NLT)

Meditations do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Stanwood Camano News or its staff.  We welcome submissions in 300 words or less. Messages should be inspirational and not aim at proselytizing. Send by email to

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