So here we are, another New Year’s Eve–a night full of parties, champagne and high hopes. A friend of mine recently expressed to me that New Year’s Eve was overrated–and in a sense I have to agree. We often approach a new year with extremely high expectations: this will be the year that I lose “this amount of pounds,” I will go to the gym everyday, I will do this or that. Then it is a week or two into the new year and all of a sudden you are beating yourself up because you have already broken your new year’s resolutions. We often build up a new year to a night that will change everything and in one day all will turn around–but then we wake up and nothing has changed (my friend’s expression). But maybe that is not what New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Resolutions should represent. It is not one magical, everything changes night but it is magical in a sense.
What if we reflected on what has changed for us in the past year; we looked at all the good and all the bad that has happened in our life and all that we have accomplished and overcome. Maybe it was the worst year of your life, but you are still here and still standing, maybe it has taken everything you’ve got to keep moving forward or to simply stand–but you have and you’ve made it to this night. Look at the strength and see the hope that so much may have changed in the past year but if you are strong enough to get through this past year, you can keep moving forward. Look for the hope and know that in a year from now everything will be different. Maybe it was the best year of your life–look at that and be thankful, see how you have grown and how you have succeeded, reflect on that and celebrate it. Or maybe, like me, your year was bittersweet–a year in my life that can only be marked by the number 2015, a year that was full special and I will always look at with fondness. I have a hard time calling it the best year yet, simply because I have been so lucky to have had some amazing years. But maybe, just maybe, 2015 was my best year yet–it was an incredible year, one that has taught me so much about life, love and God.
2015 is a year that has been marked by ups and downs, fear and anxiety, joy and love, heartache and healing, courage and leaps of faith. This is the year that I was accepted into the master’s program I am currently in (I cried like a baby when I got my acceptance), where a dream became a reality and I stepped into something I never dreamed I would stumble upon, I got my heart broken but opened my heart up to the healing power of God’s love, I graduated from college, learned to love myself and moved myself abroad. This is a year that I will always look at with fondness, and maybe it has been the best year of my life, so far. But it has been one of the most difficult years of my life. All the struggles and triumphs, fears and acts of courage, loss and love have created a beautiful masterpiece in this crazy thing called life. So tonight as I count down the final seconds of 2015 I will look back on all that I have endured and accomplished, all that I have become and I will look forward to knowing that I am entering 2016 a little bit stronger, a little bit more faithful and a little bit more loving.
I hope that you do the same, I hope that you see the year that we are leaving behind and give yourself credit for all the growth that has occurred there. I hope you turn your eyes towards the future and see that in just a year everything will change and even if you don’t see it at first–you will be different. So no, things will most likely not change in one night, but I can say with confidence that this new year does offer us magic; magic that comes from this crazy thing called change. So lets take this year by storm, one night may not change anything but that the next 365 days will change everything.
So here is to another year, may it be one full of life, love and laughter. May we take risks, step out in faith and love with all our hearts. May we trust God and all that he calls us to do and to be.
May the peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you all, may it follow you into the new year. Peace, Joy, Love and Blessings–Margaret.