"The year begins; and all its pages are as blank as the silent years of the life of Jesus Christ. Let us begin it with high resolution; then let us take all its limitations, all its hindrances, its disappointments, its narrow and common-place conditions, and meet them as the Master did in Nazareth, with patience, with obedience, putting ourselves in cheerful subjection, serving our apprenticeship."
George Hodges (b. 1856)
We turn the last page of the calendar and take a deep breath, closing the "book" on all the disappointments, failures and heartache of the past weeks and months. Of course there were times of joy and blessing - but, for most of us, it is the places we feel we haven't measured up that prick our hearts.
Another deep breath and then an exhale in relief - in the knowing we have a brand new year stretching out before us filled with possibilities and the opportunity to get it right. Perhaps we write them down, the list of resolutions we're determined to carry through. Or perhaps we simply carry in our hearts the hopes and dreams we are determined to live out. Either way, we are thankful for the chance to begin again.
For a little while all goes well, but inevitably we do the very thing we resolved we wouldn't do or we fail to do the things we longed to do. It probably isn't our fault. Things just haven't been going as planned. Our circumstances have made it so difficult to live out those well-intentioned resolutions...
I'm beginning the new year with a post at Laced With Grace (and a tiny resolution to be more faithful in writing here on my blog). Please come join me there: