Thursday, January 1, 2015


This saying has always made a lot of sense to me. As I started thinking about a personal theme for 2015, it rose to the top. My research showed me that the quote is wrongly attributed to Gandhi. He never actually said that. I also read a pundit who suggested that the philosophy is an anti-political bromide meant to sooth the guilty consciences of privileged Americans who would rather work on self-improvement that helping their neighbors. I reluctantly concede the first point, but object to the second.

I find profound truth in the idea that we must first change ourselves before we can change the world. Consider the damage done when a hero falls. Athletes. Politicians. Entertainers. Religious leaders. They might have done many positive things for a time, but when the cracks in their public persona reveal deep personal flaws or even hypocrisy, we start to question their motives and the integrity of their cause. If we want to change the world, we must first change ourselves.

I am a Christian. That means I believe in the life and ministry of a great and radical revolutionary: a teacher whose life showed us the value of courage, strength, compassion, and joy. Jesus didn't just say the right things and inspire with his words; he modeled the values of faithfulness and love that resonate right down to our time, even among those who do not believe in his deity or the church that bears his name. To imitate Christ means living the change: not just speaking out, but also stepping up.

My resolution for 2015 is to be the change I wish to see in the world.
  • I will continue to improve my own health and wellness, so I can serve my God, my neighbors, and myself more effectively. 
  • I will earn the Personal Training certification that I've been talking about for years, so that I can teach with confidence and authority. 
  • Finally, I am going to find myself a church home in 2015. My reasons for not doing so are no longer persuasive, not even to myself. I have known the value of contributing to a worshipful community, and I want that back in my life.
I will continue to refine those goals, sometimes privately, sometimes sharing that journey on Run Bob, Run, and in a year I hope to look back on these resolutions and see that I was faithful to them -- and that my faithfulness helped to change myself and my world.

Here is an invitation. How do you wish the world was different? What can you do in your own life and habits that will be a pebble dropped in the sea of change that will make the world a better place -- even just a tiny part of it.


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