So what year is this for you? Your 16th? Your 60th? Somewhere in between or later?
I don’t know about you, but I relish the beginning of a new year. Regardless of what the previous year held, the New Year always brings with it hope, anticipation, opportunities to right wrongs or to try new things, or a fresh start after disappointments.
As always, God knew what he was doing when He created a temporal world with distinct divisions between past and future, with each creating a fresh start: a new day, a new week, a new month, and a new year.
Sometimes we put a lot of undo pressure on ourselves with lofty New Year’s resolutions, but I think each of us wants to do and be a little bit better than we did or were the year before, and any amount of success should be celebrated. I was reminded of this when a new friend said that at the end of each year, she writes down her accomplishments for the year. What a wonderful idea—to focus on the successes of the past year rather than the failures. (Thanks, Heather.) Such an activity would also remind us of God’s goodness and providence. I think I will add this tradition to my year end activities.
However, though I am one to set goals, I am also learning that a daily setback is not a final setback. I love Matthew West’s song “Day One,” a part of which is quoted below.
Well, every single day Your grace reminds me
That my best days are not behind me
Wherever my yesterday may find me
Well, I don’t have to stay there
It’s day one of the rest of my life
It’s day one of the best of my life
I’m marching on to the beat of a brand new drum
Yeah, here I come
The future has begun
Jeremiah first penned such words in 586 B.C. when he wrote,
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness (Lam. 3:22-23)
And probably the greatest beginning of all--
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
I pray that despite difficulties you may have faced last year, that 2015 also brings some pleasant memories and some personal successes, and that you may look forward to 2016.
Remember, there is beauty in both the sunrise and sunset.