I am hopeless at keepting New Year resolutions. I find that the more rules I try to add to my life then the more I get tempted to break them! Life is difficult enough without adding more 'thou shalt nots' or 'I ought to do such and such' onto the list of how to live my life.

The key thing is to ask ourselves how we have changed or grown in our understanding of the world since last year? What can we explore in 2017 that maybe we've never considered before?

One idea is to spend 2017 emptying your head and heart of unhelpful ideas about God and perhaps start all over again in trying to receive God's love for you and beginning a real relationship with God. This is a more exciting new start for the year than inventing lots of rules that you'll only be tempted to break!

We all break the rules from time to time but God's love for you is a constant given—like your love for your children who often break the rules but never lose your love for them. We were made to connect with God.

A relationship with the God who became Jesus is more important in 2017 than taking on more New Year rules and regulations. If you do this then you can look back next year and say, "wow, what a fascinating year 2017 turned out to be!".

Rev Nick Evans,
Rector of Newport Pagnell Benefice