One more year has come and gone, and now we stand on the brink of another, unsure of what the horizon brings.
It’s not unique at this time to talk about looking at the year behind, reflecting on events and how they’ve affected us, judging decisions we’ve made and how we’ve progressed towards meeting our life goals. Neither is it unique to look at the year ahead, wondering what the new year brings, making new goals and resolutions, hoping for a better year than the one behind. Though these New Year activities are not unique, there is a reason that nearly everyone participates: it just makes sense.
Though the source of the aphorism “know thyself” may be in doubt, the truth of it is without question; and as Socrates so famously wrote, “the unexamined life is not worth living.” It is important for us to participate in these New Years rituals, for how else are we to grow into better people, into better followers of Christ, without intentional self-examination?
So, I find myself here, January 1st of 2013, looking back over the last year. How have the decisions I’ve made matched up with the man I want to be? With the man God wants me to be? How have a I responded to situations and circumstances, both the good and the bad? Have a responded in a way that honors God and build up the kingdom? How have I treated the people God has put into my life? Have my relationships been God honoring?
With brutal honesty, I must answer that on many occasions I have fallen short of who God wants me to be. I have not always acted with love and compassion, grace and forgiveness, faithfulness and righteousness.
But that is where the second half of this New Years tradition comes in: looking ahead. To just examine our failings would do nothing more than beat us down and depress us. But that’s not the point: the point is to improve; to be better men and women, better followers of Christ, than we were last year. So, we call upon God’s help in the new year to help make us into the sons and daughters he wants us to be. We resolve to live with faithfulness and grace in everything we do, and ask the Spirit to guide and direct us.
So, as part of my looking back and looking forward, I find myself here again: blogging.
Looking back: last year didn’t go so well. Only 22 posts for the whole year, doesn’t really match with what I had intended.
Though on the bright side, that’s 22 more posts than the previous year.
Looking forward: here I am now. And hopefully tomorrow. And the day after.
We can’t be perfect from the starting gun, it’s a process that takes time, effort, and a great deal of help from God. We can only strive to be better than we were yesterday, than the year before.
So, my blogging goal for 2013? Better than I did last year. I think I can handle a goal of 23 posts.
Hey, look! I just did one! I suppose that makes it 22.
May God bless you in the year to come. Happy New Year.
p.s. That goal also includes bible:365. If bible:365 happens to be part of your 2013 goals, here’s a new updated reading schedule for 2013.