The sun has set on 2018 and 2019 is here. Many people make resolutions of things they want to change or accomplish in the new year. I remember celebrating New Year’s Eve at our brother and sister-in-laws home maybe 25 years ago when we all wrote our resolutions on a piece of paper, and put them in a shoebox. Our sister-in-law put the box up on top of the china cabinet and said we should read them in a year. I don’t recall if that’s what we did, but I do remember that my resolution was for us to buy a house.
It’s fun to recall memories of time spent with people we love. It may or may not be so pleasant to recall the events of the past year. Perhaps we have lost someone we care about, or lost a job, had a health scare, or aren’t happy with our current situation in life. We have little or no control over some of these things, but we can work and make changes to help with others. Everyone knows that they should eat healthier, and probably need to exercise more. Taking a different perspective, improving our attitude, and putting in the hard work that is necessary can help us to change things.
One thing though that should be a constant in our lives is increasing our faith and reliance on God. That may not be a particularly “cool” thing to do in today’s society, where popular culture tells us that even if God is real, we don’t really need Him. You might think that too. But what do you do when things are tough? Who do you rely on? Who do you thank when things are good and life seems to be going well?
I can tell you that I have faced hard things in life, the deaths of my Dad and all of my grandparents. The unexpected and shocking death of our 35 year old niece comes to mind. Like nearly everyone, we have faced financial challenges, health concerns, and dealt with all the normal problems and issues that arise in life. But the problems have not overtaken me, because I have faith. Sometimes it seems so hard to put it in God’s hands. We like to try to control everything. (Insert sound effect of a buzzer here, eeeee!) Nope! We can’t! I have peace of mind because of my faith in God, in Jesus. No matter how insurmountable our problems may seem, it will all work out in the end.
If you feel like you’ve lost your faith, or don’t think that you’ve ever had it, I invite you to open your heart. God does not demand faith. He doesn’t push His way into your life. He knocks on the door and waits to be invited in. That tiny little spark of desire in your heart? Feed it! Read the Bible, go to Mass, visit a church, pray, and talk to God. Nourish your soul.
Go ahead and make your resolutions to workout, go to the gym, eat healthier, lose weight, etc. But you can accomplish so much more and live a calmer, happier life by increasing your faith. I challenge you to truly open your heart to God. Invite Him into your life. Put your troubles, problems, and desires in His hands. Trust Him, talk to Him, and let peace and joy enter your life.
The sun has set on 2018, and 2019 is here. Let the new calendar year be the beginning of a better year with the peace of Christ in your heart.