During the latter parts of December, everyone becomes excited about the New Year. Usually, I’m the same! I promise! Despite my naturally moody disposition, I love what a new year represents; an opportunity to begin again, to live differently and to do things I was scared to do the previous year. It is as though we are reborn; we have a clean sheet, a fresh start.
It’s cliché, I know.
I am also aware that most people don’t actually utilise the year we are gifted with; people fall into old patterns– they binge eat instead attending the gym, chain smoke instead of wearing nicotine patches and sleep in on Sundays instead of making it to the 10am service. I’d say the ‘change!’ train probably dies around January 18th. My gut tells me that December 31st 2014 will roll around and people will write the same resolutions in different ways, hoping to do things differently but will still be unwilling to do what is necessary to create the change they wish to see.
Alas, despite both my sentimental and cynical nature, I used to love a New Year. But you know what, last year was different. I was apprehensive.
Let me be honest. I was scared.
During my holiday to Cyprus, I looked back on 2013. I knew 2013 was going to be a madness, I could literally feel it within me on January 1st, but I was in no way prepared for what lay ahead of little old me. On my darkest days, I was on the battlefield fighting for my life, my health and my sanity, I couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel – on some days, there was no light.
As I looked back, it became clear that the days of light far outnumbered the days of darkness but that only became known to me through the gift of hindsight. There were many times last year where I could only see darkness and feel pain. I know I’m not the only one; 2013 wasn’t easy for a lot of us. Despite our planning and our pronouncement that it was ‘our year’, life inevitably got in the way. We experienced problems, depression, bereavement; bouts of anxiety, abandonment and the kind of fear that stopped us from achieving the things our hearts cried for us to do. As a result, some of us are moving through 2014 scared, fearful and apprehensive, unwilling to take meaningful steps, terrified that we may fall and have to spend the better part of 2014 learning how to walk again.
The reality is that we have no idea what lies ahead; we can recount the past and observe the present but no one, with complete certainty, can predict what the future will bring. So I’ll leave with you the scriptures that help me to walk through 2014.
Do not be afraid; just believe (Mark 5: 36)
We walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7)
Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty (Zechariah 4:6)
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal (2 Corinthians 4:16)
Remember there is no battle you have to fight alone now that you have Jesus in your life. Whatever life throws at you, he can handle it.
So glad you’re here and reading this!