January 1, New Years Day, is one of my favorite days of the year. This day, more than any of the other 364, represents a chance at a fresh start, a clean slate. New Years Day offers an opportunity to draw a line in the sand of time, letting the past be the past as we look forward to 2014 with eager anticipation of what God has in store.
My reflecting on 2013 yields positive feelings on the year that is most recently spent; my family and I had a great year. Of course, not everybody reading this will share that sentiment. As I write this, I consider friends for whom 2013 in the rearview mirror is a welcome sight. Some suffered the untimely loss of a loved one as others dealt (and continue to deal) with serious medical diagnoses. Some faced trials within their families as others lost their jobs. I lift them in prayer now, even as I count my blessings.
Whether 2013 was a banner year or a year of trials, we all begin today with the same opportunity for a renewed enthusiasm for life. At 52 years of age, I’ve chosen to embrace this opportunity. Rather than spew a list of resolutions that will mean little to anybody but me, I offer this bit of wisdom and encouragement from God’s Word:
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. What does the worker gain from his toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live. That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil–this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that men will revere him. ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1-14
Wise King Solomon recognized that the things of this life, of their own accord, are meaningless. In contemplating this fact, he concluded that it is only through God, who “set eternity in the hearts of men” (verse 12), that the meaningless becomes meaningful. My prayer for myself, my family, my friends, and all who read this is that 2014 is a year during which that which is truly meaningful, the eternity God has planted in each of our hearts, becomes the true object of our desire.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” ~ John 3:16
Happy New Year!!