The Missing Resolution

The Missing Resolution

By Ken Alvis

The year 2024 is here and, of course, another list of the top 10 New Year resolutions. A recent Forbes Health/OnePoll survey listed the following top 10 resolutions for 2024 and there are no surprises:

  1. Improve fitness.
  2. Improve finances.
  3. Improve mental health.
  4. Lose weight.
  5. Improve diet.
  6. Make more time for loved ones.
  7. Stop smoking.
  8. Learn a new skill.
  9. Make more time for hobbies.
  10. Improve work-life balance.

These are all commendable but there is one glaring omission and it’s a big one: “have no bronze serpents.” What? That’s right – remove any bronze serpents from your life. Let me explain.
There is a story in the book of Numbers, chapter 21, where the Israelites are wandering in the desert, and they are big-time grumps. They gripe to God and Moses about the “worthless” food and lack of water. They gripe, and gripe some more. God responds by sending poisonous snakes to punish the people. The snakes bite the people, and many die. The people realize their sin and beg Moses to ask God to remove the snakes. Moses prays for the people, and God tells Moses to make a bronze serpent and put it on a pole. Anyone who looks at the bronze serpent will be healed. Moses obeys, and it miraculously works.

Now, fast forward about 800 years and we come to 2 Kings 18:4 where it says “He (King Hezekiah) removed the high places and broke the pillars and cut down the Asherah. And he broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had made offerings to it (it was called Nehushtan).”

Did you catch this? They hung onto that bronze serpent for 800 years, dragging it everywhere they went. They finally made an idol of it, and called it Nehushtan, which simply means “a piece of bronze.” This story is applicable today, because it highlights what can happen when you make an idol of anything or anyone in your life. You might think you are more inclined to make an idol of “bad” things, but it is often the good things that slip in unnoticed, and it soon can take control of your heart. Good things and good people can easily become idols in our lives. This is contrary to our devotion to God, where our praise, worship, and adoration are to be given to Him alone.
So, a simple question as we begin 2024: can you say that you have no bronze serpents in your life? Does Christ reign in your heart above anything and anyone else? Jesus said in Luke 12:34 that “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” That means that what you invest your time in, what you talk about, what you keep thinking about in your mind, reveals what’s really going on in your heart. It’s just that simple!

The apostle Paul likewise says it so clearly in Colossians 1:18: “Christ is the head of the church, which is his body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So he is first in everything.” Get that? First place in everything!

So, let’s start this year with no bronze serpents in our lives. Let’s keep Christ first!

No Comments




no categories