You who dwell in the garden with friends in attendance,let me hear your voice.
Song of Songs 8:13
Well that’s Christmas over! In a few days 2015 will be consigned to history as Big Ben chimes in the New Year. Traditionally this is a time to make New Year resolutions even though they often get broken before January is out.But let us take some time over the next few days to reflect on this past year so that we can make some resolutions that we can keep for the whole of the year.
Maybe we might resolve to get physically fitter in this coming year. We could give up cream cakes, for example, or those tempting chocolate biscuits. Perhaps we might take out a subscription for the gym, or simply go along more often. But do remember before embarking on any strenuous exercise programme to get a health check by the doctor, who will need to take a full medical history before giving the go-ahead.
But what about our spiritual fitness, our spiritual health? What resolutions do we need to make there? Do we need to change anything there, or is all satisfactory as it is?
Once again, before making any rash decisions a health check is appropriate. So let us consider where we were on our spiritual journey on 28 December 2014.What was our relationship with God at that point? Were we active in His work or were we in the same comfortable, dare I say complacent, place we occupied in December 2013.How far we have come along the path since then? We should not dwell too much on that since what has happened cannot be changed – it is in the past. It will of course provide reminders and pointers for the future, but leave it there. But have we really done those things we ought to have done or have we strayed from the straight and narrow road? In other words, what have we done for God over the last twelve months?
So we come to the point where we ask ourselves where we are now. How far have we progressed on our spiritual path? In other words, what are we doing for God now?
Now are we open to making our spiritual resolutions for 2016? We need to pray, to ask God what He wants us to do and listening to what He has to tell us. Taking account of our starting point and our progress through 2015 what does He want us to do in 2016? In other words, what am I going to do for God in the coming year? Whatever He wants us to do we must make sure that we are committed to His plan even though the path may not be smooth, even though people might get upset!
And I think the key word here is commitment. We must be committed to following God wherever He leads through January and beyond.
A Happy, Peaceful and Blessed New Year to you all
Peter is a father and a grandfather who has been retired from full time work for a number of years