Guest Author: Cherie Bates
I should probably begin by introducing myself.
Hello, my name is Cherie, and I have a confession to make: I am not making a New Year’s resolution this year. Instead, I am writing out a manifesto.
A manifesto is defined by Webster’s Dictionary as:
A written statement declaring publicly the intentions, motives, or views of it’s issuer.
See, I have had issue in the past following through, even with the best of intentions, with the resolutions of past years and instead of repeating the same patterns, I am changing things up on myself.
I am deeply discouraged by the attitudes and actions of those in my generation and those that follow it. As one born in this generation, I have no interest in discussing who or what is to blame as I feel that will only lead us in circles and into that pattern of pushing aside our ability to change ourselves in favor of an easy way out. I am simply stating that I am concerned with who we are and where we are going.
All of this to say, I am defying the norms of my generation in the following ten (10) areas:
- I am not a covenant breaker. The promises I have made to my husband, family, friends, and church are meant to be lasting regardless of my feelings. My God is a covenant keeper, and I choose to honor Him by doing the same.
- I will chase after the ways of God at the expense of my own, so that greater things can be accomplished in my short life than I am capable of accomplishing on my own. He has plans for me. Destiny for me. I will not be short-changed, distracted, or limited in my pursuit of Him.
- I will submit to the leadership of my husband, regardless of whether I feel like he is right or wrong. I do not need permission or approval from the feminist crowd. I have never fit their mold anyway.
- I am a mother whose chief goal is to win the hearts of my children to the Lord. I set aside my desire for good behavior and anything else that might get in the way. I pray they serve Him all the days of their lives.
- I will be brave. Brave enough to tell the truth and let Him control the outcome, brave enough to blaze the trails when there are none, and brave enough to do all of the hard things He asks me to do. I will be brave and I will trust that they are for my good.
- I will not be fickle. I am steady, reliable, and trustworthy. My God’s nature is unchangeable, faithful, and true. I am His daughter, adopted into His family, and made in His image, so I will reflect Him in this way as well.
- I will have real, meaningful friendships regardless of how I have been hurt in the past. I choose to work on my flaws that hinder me from investing in close relationships. I understand that relationships are not built in the happy laughter of game nights or ball games, but are built in tragedy, failure, and honesty. Being vulnerable is imperative but also my greatest struggle.
- I will pray, hope, and believe for the impossible things because He is ABLE to handle them.
- I will work hard regardless of whether it “goes anywhere” or not. My motive is to serve Him and make His name great. He gets to control whatever else happens to me.
- I will love and lead and not count the cost because I am here to bind up wounds and set others free. May I never be distracted from the suffering of others.
I do not write this as a judgment of anyone in my generation, just as a personal “line in the sand.”