- John 14:6
Today is the last Sunday in 2019 and in just two days at midnight, we will welcome in 2020 and look forward to a new year. Some of us hope it will be a better year, some of us are perfectly happy with the way the last year went and just want things to keep going as they've been, but whatever the case life moves on. For me, the reminder of a turning of the page on the calendar offers also a good reminder to take a look back at ourselves and evaluate what we think of it. And while many of us go out and celebrate the occasion, why not think about our lifestyles and ourselves and make a commitment to correct those things that we know could make us better. Nowhere is there a better time to ask ourselves the question: What does God think of our performance and our approach to living? Would he be happy or disappointed? Likely, it's somewhere in between since he wants us to live for Him and none of us ins capable of fully doing that on our own. No, we need his help and if we read carefully the words from scripture above, it becomes obvious that to attain Salvation and life hereafter in His Kingdom, all of us have things we need to do to show our desire to attain the unattainable goal of perfection by God's standard.
We have, of course, many traditions that we follow to usher in the new year and by no means should we alter any of them. For some it's parties and/or fireworks; for others it's a quiet night with loved ones at home, perhaps celebrating with a glass of bubbly and a good old movie as we tick off the minutes until the new decade arrives. Some believe in a meal including cabbage and black-eyed peas for good luck and money, others treat it as a special part of the Twelve Days of the Old English Christmas with the singing of carols up until Twelfth Night and, of course, many watch the "Ball" drop in Times Square accompanied by the timeless Guy Lombardo rendition of Robert Burns' Auld Lang Syne. Then, of course, there are the many parades and the football games that take center stage for so many. But all of these things, while offering fun and great memories quickly end, and our need to have someone greater than us to guide is comes back to the fore, whether we believe it or not.
But how about on this Sunday before the new year we put an emphasis on recommitting our lives to God and there is no better way to do it than make it the center ingredient of your resolutions. In fact, since God is the one who provides us all things, it can be a resolution all by itself. Write it down in easy words and put it up somewhere where you can't miss it. That way, every day you will see it and remember it and reinforce your efforts to life as He wants us to. In a nustshell, God wants us to love others as we love ourselves and that is a tall order. But with the gifts God has given us, foremost of which are His Son who died for us and the Holy Spirit who lives within us, we have the tools we need to meet the task. We just have to use them and that requires discipline. And if we stay true to the cause, come next year this time, we will see that we have become better, that we have become kinder and more loving and someone that others wonder about what makes us as we are. The love that our Lord and Savior offers us if we accept His offer will do amazing things for all of us, lowly mortal sinners that we are by nature.
If you are a believer in Christ, a New Year's resolution to recommit to Christ is a perfect way to reinforce those things that you want to accomplish. If you aren't a believer, might we suggest that you take a look at what Christianity is all about with an open heart and see what happens. The Prince of Peace is here for all of us and He wants us all to inherit the Kingdom if we learn to know Him and what He has done for us. After all, we have nothing to lose but lots to gain, for nothing is more important than gaining Eternal Life with all the joys and beauty it brings. At least think about it.
Happy New Year, everyone. Get those resolutions done and commit to following them every day of the year ahead. God bless you all.