Lose weight and eat healthier. For 2017, that was the top New Year's resolution in America. Signups at health clubs and fitness centers spiked. Health magazines and dieting experts plotted out their "New Year, New You" meal plans. Pinterest flooded with recipes that were both nutritious and appetizing, and self-care bloggers broke out their top tips for taking control of your mental health.
As the new year brings in a clean slate, the quest to reinvent oneself ensues.
If only these well-meaning aspirations pan out. U.S. News reported that about 80 percent of resolutions fail by the second week of February.
"Researchers have looked at success rates of peoples' resolutions: the first two weeks usually go along beautifully, but by February, people are backsliding and by the following December, most people are back where they started, often even further behind," says journalist Ray Williams in Psychology Today article 'Why New Year's Resolutions Fail.'
Speculations surrounding this high failure rate suggest that perhaps resolution-making (and breaking) individuals underestimate just how hard it is to replace old habits with an entirely new one.
When it comes to dieting, Damon Davis, author of God Cures; 21 Days to Look Good, Live Great, and Love Well, says the key is in the mind:
"If you go on a diet and haven't changed the way you think, then what's going to happen when the diet ends? You got it. You will go right back to the way you lived before because you have not impacted the way you thought before," Davis says.
Being able to maintain a diet relies heavily on the will of the mind. But Davis' book goes further than simply strengthening mental willpower. For one thing, the God Cures 21-Day Plan includes Bible verses. Davis argues that the journey to maximum health means connecting the dots between your spirit, soul, and body.
"Your understanding of these three parts of you, of your makeup, of the total composition of you, will lead you on a journey to total and absolute healing and wholeness, at the core, from the inside out," Davis says.
The day-by-day Bible verses center the dieter on the ultimate enabler of optimal health. While New Year's resolutions are predicated on taking control of your health, body and, basically, your life, Davis stresses the importance in surrendering to God for real change.
"When we give God our all, when we press in to Him, when we surrender, He gives us something that changes us," he says.
God Cures reveals how we have the power to change but only if we choose not to lean on our own understanding. Davis says to trust in God, who can fully eradicate whatever plagues us. He cites Proverbs 3:5-6:
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths."
Davis argues that illness and brokenness are a result of being led by the soul, not the Spirit. In other words, the desires we have as fallible human beings—desires that are at the heart of self-improving New Year resolutions—lead to failure whether it be physical or psychological.
Using the story of Adam and Eve, Davis shows how the soul drives our wants, emotions and motives, consequently subjecting our bodies to sickness and disease. In light of original sin, Davis makes the case that man was not created to "make decisions or lead his life based upon his wants." Rather we were designed to be led by the Holy Spirit and be in a personal relationship with God.
As God Cures details, submitting to the Holy Spirit is the first step to wholeness.
"When your soul becomes subject to your regenerate spirit, and you seek God's will for your life through His Word, you find the life God intended for you. This is when you find your pathway to healing and to finally becoming cured as you eradicate what is inside you that leads to death and decay," Davis says.
While encouraging readers to get motivated and begin their journey to good health, Davis keeps God at the center. After the diets, get-fit goals and self-help instructions, Davis shows that God is the one who can truly transform you into a "new you."
"Therefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things have passed away. Look, all things have become new. All this is from God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation." (2 Cor. 5:17-18).
About Damon Davis: Damon Davis, chairman and CEO of Legacy Worldwide, is recognized as a global leader in production and media services among nonprofit groups, humanitarian organizations and ministries around the world. Davis has dedicated himself to building on a family heritage of helping ministries and organizations. Through his nationally broadcast 1onONE interview program Davis continues to pursue opportunities to promote health and personal development that will lead to better and brighter futures for everyone.
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