It is the first day of the New Year, 2013. I awoke to a new awareness of how fresh and sparkling the snow looked this morning. The snow had transformed the earth from the drabness of a barren landscape. Yep, "freshness" that's it. That's what the new year is offering me as I pray to the God of my life this sparkling morning. God is holding out a freshness of life to me. He is offering me a new beginning.
I am not so certain we enter into the new year with white and freshness on our mind. Many are nursing a hang over from too much New Year's Eve partying. Others, wake up to the same ol, same ol, attitudes. It's just another day in this miserable world. I tend to believe that we let our glance rest a little too long on all those areas of our lives where we feel we have failed or not given our best. Why else do people make resolutions based on what the last year has brought to them? We look into the last year and feel guilty or discouraged when we realize that we are still struggling with the same failures and weaknesses.
January is a good time to deliberately set our steps forward, to begin again, again, and again, and give ourselves over to the promises of the future. We look, really look, at our life's journey and rejoice over the beautiful gift of another year given to us.
Close your eyes, and imagine all that clean white snow covering all the deadness of the winter earth. See that same soft, clean whiteness fall into your heart. Feel it heal the wounds, making clean your dreams and hopes. Hear the God of new beginnings speak to you about the fresh start being offered. This is God's "Happy New Year" to us. Instead of simply working hard all by ourselves on some resolutions that we hope will change us into better people, we come to our winter God and offer ourselves to Him believing in His mercy, healing, and refreshment, trusting that He will touch what we most need. Breaking old habits, and attitudes that keep us from gospel living cannot be done without God active in our hearts.
I invite you this month to pray the message of freshness. Think about how we end one journey and begin another with a clean start. Take an early morning walk, feel the snow on your face, breathe in the cold, crisp, freshness of the air, listen to the wind blowing through the trees. This is what God's love for you is like. May His love give you a brand new start this year!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!