On January 19th, Amazon featured a Kindle sale. The reason for this is that, according to research group Strava, most people give up their New Year’s resolutions by January 19th. For those whose resolutions included reading more books in the New Year, Amazon had this sale to (1) remind people of their resolution and, (2) to encourage them to fulfil that resolution by offering Kindle books at a greatly reduced rate. I can’t imagine anyone falling for that trick! (I purchased With Malice Toward None, a biography of Abraham Lincoln…after all, it was only $1.99)

We are good at making such resolutions, but most of us would have to admit that we don’t always follow through with them. In fact, I suspect the majority of us give them up well before January 19th. Truth be told, we even joke about not following through with them!

Have you ever seen someone become a Christian and not follow through with their “resolution” to serve God faithfully? Probably all of us can name someone who became a Christian, burned with the fire of zeal for a time and gradually lost interest. Some may stay “in church” but really get nothing from it. Others just quit. As the writer of Hebrews would say, they have “drawn back unto perdition.” (Heb. 10:39)

 Christianity is not a habit nor a once-a-week, regularly scheduled appointment. Our faith is a lifestyle that involves our heart and mind. (Mt. 22:37) It is the choice to be crucified with Christ and let him rule in our lives. (Gal. 2:20) In addition, it is to be practiced daily until the day we die. (Phil. 1:21; Rev. 2:10)

This may be why Jesus asked whether, at his second coming, he would find faith on the earth. (Lk. 18:8) Knowing man’s propensity for giving up on good intentions, Jesus may well have anticipated those that would not follow through with their commitment to God. Like a child with a new toy, the excitement wanes, the toy is set aside and forgotten in short time.

A persistent faith is one that keeps going in spite of disappointments, trials or worldly temptations. It is a trust in God that believes He will follow through with His promises to us and that there will be a great reward for our labors. As Paul, we should “press toward the goal” knowing there is a day coming that will make our effort worthwhile.

I hope you didn’t give up your faith on January 19th…. — Gary Knuckles


Gary Knuckles is Minister of the Briensburg Church of Christ and lives in Benton, Ky.