New Year: The Symbol of Hope
If you’re searching for a New Year’s resolution, why not avail yourself of the revelations that shape our destiny and purpose in life? All our spiritual knowledge is grounded in the wisdom of Jesus Christ, the new born king. He said, “In this world you will have many troubles, but take heart, and be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world.”
New Year’s Day is a time to look back on the year gone, to accept where we stand at the beginning of the New Year, and to attend to how we wish to live personally and as a society in the coming year. The Christian approach to the New Year is to emphasise attending to the goodness of our world and of people in it and to keep hope alive. The image of the New Year is that also of Christmas: a new-born child, a symbol of innocence and hope within all the perils of nature and of a murderous king Herod. When we see a child, we see our future. We look back at the world which we are leaving to our children and forward to the world that we would want for them.
One of the best ways to be faithful to the Lord starting from this New Year is to take him at his word: “Be not afraid,” this is a call to courage. Jesus is asking us to be calm in the storm of our lives, not only for our own peace of mind but for the well-being of our loved ones. We can decide to present the face of Christ to them by showing them our faith in His strength. Sometimes it is normal to worry about the future because there may be something that poses serious threats to our peace.
Here is a plan worth adopting: Jesus urges us to brush aside our fears by focusing on Him and His power to carry us through the storms of life. His teachings, handed to us, contain a source of knowledge which we need today. Our decision to trust in the Lord in all circumstances will help us throughout the year. Our gradual transformation in Christ will bring blessings to those whom we love, and earn us a higher place in heaven. Why not trust the Lord? He will do for you what you are not yet able to do for yourself: Be not afraid.
As we open our calendar year, we hold onto this recognition that God still desires to bless and, further, that we are interwoven in the process of this blessing nature of God. We need God’s blessing every day, and every day we are invited to be God’s blessing to each other. God does not wait for our perfect selves to manifest before offering blessing. Rather, God blesses through our imperfect selves. As we bring Jesus’ presence to life through healing, forgiveness, goodness and humble dealing with each other, we continue the calling modelled by Mary, Mother of God and the truth that is captured in this understanding.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Fr. Ejikeme Valentine Ntamaka