Resolve for a New Year

The prospect of a new year can give us a sense of opportunity, possibility, and purpose. We feel more determined to try a little harder, reach a little farther, and somehow do a little more. What before may have seemed out of reach suddenly enters the realm of possibility when we resolve with newness of heart.

Some time ago, a young adult discussed with his roommate the fact that he was not a “morning person.” He explained that for as long as he could remember, he had never been very cheerful in the morning. His roommate simply replied, “If you don’t like that about yourself, why don’t you change?” The young man responded with feelings of doubt. “I’ve just always been this way,” he explained. “I can’t change that.” But his roommate persisted, “Why not try?”

And so he did. Sooner than he expected, the young man really did change. With some determination and effort, he found that he could be as pleasant in the morning as he chose to be. Of course, he had occasional lapses, but by and large, he became the “morning person” he never thought he was. The hardest part, it turned out, was convincing himself that he could change.

Some day we might look back on our lives and wonder what we could have been if we had believed in ourselves just a little more.  As we do, we will also see how even small changes—seemingly insignificant decisions—set our course and shaped our lives for the better. If we want to be, we can be better parents, better friends, better neighbors. We can be more patient, more forgiving, more cheerful—regardless of how we may have been in the past.

May this time of newness deepen our resolve to focus on the things that matter most, to live and love more fully. May it be a season of renewal and reflection as we strive to become the person God knows we can be.

     Lloyd D. Newell, Music & the Spoken Word,  Dec 30, 2012