Usually by this time, New Year’s resolutions are broken. Many people just wander through life and have quit making resolutions or goals for the New Year because they find they can’t keep them.

A softer way to view resolutions is to treat them as goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-Bound is what we are taught in my workplace. And to have the flexibility to see them as goals. If you don’t aim at the moon, you’ll never get off the ground.

For years I have tried to follow the Covey method of time management, prioritizing activities and setting goals for each role in my life, while taking time to “sharpen the saw.” I try to ride my bicycle in the basement on a magnetic trainer at least twice a week while reading good books, usually non-fiction ones, getting physical and mental/spiritual done at the same time. This year I have several books to read, including two about Winston Churchill and one written by him.

2017 is pretty unique. With all the turmoil in the world and the surprise changing of political leaders in the USA, it’s either morning in America or mourning in America. So people are looking forward to the New Year with joy, dread or cautious anticipation. It is quite likely that the earth will continue to turn, however, and probably things will settle down to some middle ground politically.

On January 1, 2017, we again sang at our church this new song to the tune of “Auld Lang Syne.” Written by Dustin Kensrue, arranged by Kings Kaleidoscope, here is an article describing the writing of the song. Click on this link to see and hear it performed at Reality Vancouver Church in Canada.

Should nothing of our efforts stand, no legacy survive
Unless the Lord does raise the house, In vain its builders strive

To you who boast tomorrow’s gain, tell me what is your life
A mist that vanishes at dawn, all glory be to Christ!


All glory be to Christ our king!
All glory be to Christ!
His rule and reign will ever sing,
All glory be to Christ!

His will be done, His kingdom come, on earth as is above
Who is Himself our daily bread, praise Him the Lord of love

Let living water satisfy the thirsty without price
We’ll take a cup of kindness yet, all glory be to Christ! (chorus)


When on the day the great I Am, the faithful and the true
The Lamb who was for sinners slain, is making all things new.

Behold our God shall live with us and be our steadfast light
And we shall ere his people be, all glory be to Christ! (chorus)


This most familiar of tunes has some great new lyrics filled with Biblical allusions. I’ve been working to add it to the list of hymns I know by heart.

The first verse alludes to Psalm 127. King Solomon wrote that “Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” Here is a commentary by British theologian Matthew Henry (1662-1714) on this psalm.

The second verse has part of the prayer Jesus taught His disciples to pray in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7.

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name.
 Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
 Give us this day our daily bread.
 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
 And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

The third verse has several allusions to Revelation, the final book of the Bible.  The elders in heaven in Chapter 5 fell down and worshipped, and thousands of angels said with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain…” And then in Revelation 21, the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, came down from heaven, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And the Apostle John (in his vision) heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ““Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.  And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Last year we sang it at our New Year’s Eve Party, as the calendar rolled from 2015 to 2016, the seventh to eighth day of Christmas 2015. I did meet my goal to learn all three verses by the end of January, since I didn’t make it by Epiphany


Other articles

In previous blog posts, I began telling the story of my brain tumor and the depression which followed it. The second article in the series described my faith in God which sustained me through both trials.

Having recently started a word-by-word translation of Martin Luther’s Bible from German to English, I introduced the project and published Matthew Chapter 1 . Later I wrote commentary on it; my church background and theological training is in my USA Melting Pot bio.


Dale Murrish writes on history, travel, technology, religion and politics for the Troy Patch and USA Melting Pot club. You can help this non-profit club by making your Amazon purchases through the link on the left side of their website. You can also see over a dozen ethnic presentations from people with firsthand knowledge under Culture & Country (right hand side), and outdoor presentations (Hobby & Fun), including posts on bicycling, skiing and camping.

Other interesting articles on the USA Melting Pot website have been written by Bilal Rathur on his hajj to Saudi Arabia (Part 6) and by Carl Petersen. Thanks to both of them for their contributions.