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Clean, bright & new

I hope the past year has gone well for you and that the new one will be even better.  I think New Year’s Day is a great holiday.  It tends get the short end of the attention stick because it comes right after Christmas and is usually overshadowed by it (New Year’s Day 2000 would be a notable exception).  The truth is, New Years Day is regarded by most of us as part of the Christmas holiday package (kind of like buying one holiday and getting the other one free). 

However, I think New Year’s Day is special and should be viewed that way for a couple of reasons. 


First of all, it is a time of hope.  Why do people celebrate the new year?  One reason would be that the ringing in of a new year means they have made it through to another year.  For those living with a serious illness which has them at death’s door or for those whose lifestyle keeps them knocking on that door, simply surviving to the next year is a cause for celebration.  But for those of us with better health and safer lifestyles, there is something more to celebrate.  That something more is the hope and promise represented by a new year.  Before us is a year which, like anything else new, is unstained by failure and untouched by disappointment.  Most of us long for a future that is better than our past and if nothing else, we have it for at least a few moments each year when we throw away the old calendar with its checkered past and replace it with a calendar that is clean of failures, bright with promise, and new with hope. 


But the new year is about more than hope, it is also about resolution.  Responsible people realize that if things are to be better in the new year, there are some things that they must do and so we have New Years’s resolutions.  What better time to take on the bad habit, incorporate the good behavior, and just generally strive to be a better overall person?  And so it is these two things, hope and resolution, that I think make New Year’s a special holiday. 


Hope and resolution - hopeful resolution . . . I think that’s not a bad way of describing the disciple’s life, for with Jesus our lives are full of both.  The scriptures speak of God giving us a “new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,” (1 Peter 1:3).  Our hope is as alive as our Lord!  Out of this hope we live for Him.  We follow our new birth with a new life --- hopeful resolution.


Here’s wishing your life is one of hopeful resolution in this year and in all the years to come. 
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