The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Old words begin a new year

Let your affirmations echo biblical assurances

The start of a new year always arouses within us a certain desire and determination to deepen our spiritual life. Most years we make resolutions or write vows, which we witness for each other.

This year we decided to try to worksteadily with a practice we’ve only sampled: affirmations.

An affirmation is a statement of what you believe that is written out or spoken to yourself silently in simple language. You may have heard about them from some of the New Age speakers on TV or those spam e-mails about how youcan get “amazing results” fromfollowing a certain thoughtprocess.

Affirmations are quite popular with people who want to create more abundance or healing in their lives. But affirmations are not a new spirituality fad. They are as old as the Bible.

Bruce G. Epperly, a minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ, in his extremely helpful book The Power of Affirmative Faith (Chalice Press, 2000) notes: “We need an easily learned, relevant and accessible form of spiritual practice that gives life to every aspect of faith. We need a spiritual practice that unites tradition and innovation, theology and practice, silence and action.”

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