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Happy New Year! What’s God’s resolution for me?

December 31, 2016

Happy New Year!

Well I hope it is, I really do.  My hope that for me and for everyone is that the next 12 months are special; filled with joy and happiness. I hope for more peace and reconciliation and far less war and hatred. I hope too for a better me.

I want a new start.  I need one really.  I’m not all that good, and I don’t feel very worthy of God, and even less worthy of the honour of wearing my collar the wrong way around.  Thankfully, God doesn’t seem too put off by how I feel. New Year can bring a new start. Thankfully, God is on the job. I may not be all that good, but he is. His Spirit is at work in me. I wonder what God’s New Year resolution is for me?

New Year is not a religious feast.  It’s a secular celebration.  A festival based on the turning of a man-made counting system.  But, the theme of beginning again is so attractive.  So seductive.  The hope of a new start, of a new life with all the muck of the past put behind me IS very much at the heart of the Christian faith.  I need it, everyone needs it, because no one is perfect. Indeed, that’s the problem: I can never be perfect but I worship a perfect God.

That’s where Jesus comes in.  A way to the perfect God through one of us – a human being and an ordinary one at that. Not a prince, not rich.  Just normal, with a mother and family.  Very like so many families today, growing up with a step-dad rather than his real father. He was flesh and blood like me, but also fully God.  The bridge between humanity and divinity – the way home.  The way back to being childlike and innocent once again. But Jesus is more than just a bridge to heaven, as if earth doesn’t matter at all.

Jesus existence shows that earth is good enough even for God, or at least that is how the world was made, that is how me and everything was made – baked to perfection and good enough for God.  I am good enough for God to live in. I may not be perfect, or even all that good, but God’s love seems to see right through to a son that he loves.

I fail. Oh, I try to love, to be generous and kind, and the Spirit is making me more of all those things and more. But, I know that there is still so much more to be done. Jesus offers me a chance of a new start, today, with all those who are making New Year’s resolutions.  But even better Jesus is there to give me and anyone the chance of a new start anytime.  So when so many New Year’s resolutions have been forgotten; February time perhaps, or even Easter; then I can still start over again. The great thing about my Father is that he doesn’t make me wait for January 1st to come around again.

I hope for a truly happy New Year, I really do; for me and for everyone.  I hope that the next 12 months are special; that they are made up of 365 days filled with joy and happiness.  But whatever is in store, I wish for God’s presence and blessing every second and every step of the way. I pray this old blessing for me and for everyone throughout 2017 (Numbers 6:24-26 (CEV)):

“I pray that the Lord
    will bless and protect you,
and that he will show you mercy
    and kindness.
May the Lord be good to you
    and give you peace.”


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