According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a staggering 400,000 home burglaries occur within the first week of every new year. While many may conclude that these burglaries are the result of people away from their homes due to vacationing, or involving those who live in more poverty-stricken communities, it is interesting that over half of all items that are reported stolen were either purchased or received as gifts over the preceding Christmas holiday season.
Crime scene investigators often agree that one of the most common contributing factors as to why these gifts are stolen every year is due to how and perhaps most importantly, when people decide to discard and throw away their boxes and trash. Often lying on the curb next to millions of dried out Christmas trees, are the empty boxes of new television, toys, clothes, and jewelry, which can serve as an official communique to nearby thieves and prying neighbors that something new and valuable has recently arrived to your home.
Sadly, the same can be true when it comes to how we establish and share our new year goals and resolutions. The renewed sense of excitement and gift of hope that we often enter into every new year with can be easily stolen and lost if we are not careful as to how and when we are sharing publicly what God has recently promised to us, or commissioned from us.
Simply put, there are some resolutions and goals that need to be stored, before they are shared.
In Proverbs 10:14 (HCSB), it states that ‘the wise store up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool invites ruin.’ Another translation states this even more plainly:
The wise don’t tell everything they know, but the foolish talk too much and are ruined.
The decision to store a new year goal, resolution or promise God has given you is not to be done out of fear of losing it, but rather out of a sincere desire to make sure you have given yourself the time to become fully engaged with what each requires. Most of our new year goals and resolutions are never fully materialized because few knew the costs associated with keeping them. And while it is very natural for us to share our newfound decisions with others around us, there perhaps is far greater safety and redemptive value in sharing what we have done than simply what we have decided to do.
This new year, be wise and intentional that what you decide to place at the curb of your home and heart at the beginning can still be found inside at the very end.