Out With The Old

31 Dec

“The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year.  It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes.  Unless a particular man made New Year resolutions, he would make no resolutions.  Unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective.”  ~ G.K. Chesterton

Today is the day.  The last day of the calendar year.  With it finishes hopes and dreams of what the year has held.  Some of the dreams have been realized, some may have remained unfulfilled. As we come to the end of the year, we realize that a new year is just around the corner.

There are probably a lot of people whom we know planning events for tonight.  New Year’s Eve is always a big one for many people.  Dining, dancing, and counting down the seconds to a new year are as traditional as it gets.  But what is it, exactly, to which we count down?  Is it just another year?  Or is there something more special about it?

It will only be “another year” if we have no plans and make no resolutions.  If we allow this day to pass by without looking at where we have been and where we still would like to go, we will waste the day and, in the process, waste another year.

G.K. Chesterton reminded us that resolutions are crucial.  They are what keeps us on task, what keeps us motivated.  Preparations are not begun if resolutions are not made.  If preparations are not begun, real change cannot be accomplished.  If real change is not accomplished, at the end of next year we will be exactly the same as we are right now.  The question is, do we want to be exactly the same next year as this year?

I should certainly hope not.  We are called not to stagnate but to grow.  That is one of the reasons for New Year Resolutions.  They should be something that we can achieve, something that will benefit us, and something that will encourage us to go even further in our growth.

Many New Year Resolutions are material.  As we are believers, we should be sure to make some spiritual resolutions as well.  We might decide that we need to pray more consistently, that we should go to Mass on a more regular basis, or that we should volunteer in a ministry or two.  These resolutions will help our prayer lives and our faith lives, helping us to grow deeper in love with our Lord.

If our past year was not that good, we have the chance to make the new one better.  If the past year was a good one, we have a chance to capitalize on our success and grow even stronger.

FAITH ACTION:  Take some time to make realistic resolutions for 2019 making sure that some of the resolutions are spiritual in nature as well.