What’s the Big Deal About New Year?

So…..I stayed awake until midnight last night. That doesn’t usually happen. I’m an early bird, so by 9:00 pm, I’m ready to go nighty-night. I’d love to sleep later, but I just wake up, so I sleep in on the front end by going to bed early. (I may need coffee instead of tea today! 🙁 )

Usually midnight isn’t super special, but last night was New Year’s Eve, so it was a big deal. Everyone stays up until midnight to celebrate. To experience it. We stepped from one year to another. The calendar rolled over again. We went from 2015 to 2016 with one tic of the second hand.

Happy New Year! It’s 2016. A whole new year. It’s a big deal all over the world….but why?

Really, the only thing new about it is the date. I still woke up early, much to my chagrin. I still have the same house. The same car. The same Christmas tree is in my living room this morning that was here last night. I still need to lose the same 10 pounds I did yesterday.

 

Why do we make such a big deal about midnight on December 31st?

It’s a time we set aside to reflect. We did it at the dinner table last night. What was your favorite memory? What was your favorite blessing? We smiled and laughed as we remembered the year. As we rehearsed the blessings God so generously poured out on us. He was so faithful to us, and my heart is so full.

And it’s a great time to look at a new beginning. A new year. Who do I want to be? What do I want to change? What do I want more of? Or less of?

I think we make such a big deal about New Year because it brings with it so much emotion. There’s relief and sometimes regret. There’s excitement and hope.

For some it’s relief that this year is over and they get to walk away from a year that wasn’t amazing…that was filled with more tears than laughter. More grief than joy.

For some it’s the spark of anticipation of dreams coming true and the adventure that awaits in living them out. Finally.

It’s the What If’s and What’s Next’s and I Can’t Wait To See’s that pull us into the celebration of that one second in time when the clock moves from 11:59:59 pm to 12:00:00 am. Happy New Year. What will it be?

There are a lot of “the sames” that bring me comfort from one year to the next. My God is the same. He never changes. I know He’ll be faithful again this year. His Word is the same. It’s the same Genesis 1:1 that I’ll read first this morning as I begin reading through the Bible in a year again.

And there are “news” that I look forward to every year. Like my new journal. What will be in it? How will He show Himself faithful again? What dreams will come true and what new ones will He plant in my heart?

The cool thing is this – we don’t have to wait for that one magical second a year to experience the New Year sensation. We can have this every day.

It’s like sunset. I love a good sunset, especially when I’m sitting on the North Shore of Oahu watching it sink down into the Pacific Ocean. It doesn’t just mark the end of the day. What’s over. What’s gone. I love the hope for tomorrow that sunset brings with it. The anticipation of the unknown. The reminder of new mercies and fresh starts that we get every day.

So although nothing really changed at midnight last night but the date, the date did change. It is a new year. Goodbyes. Hellos. Remember and forget. Fresh starts. New beginnings. Hopes. Dreams. Anticipation. Selah.

I pray for you (and me) that this will be a year that we know Him more intimately than ever before. That we experience His power and presence each and every day. May His strength empower us to live intentionally and make an impact on those around us. May His love flow through us to each and every person we come in contact with. May doors open that need to open and shut that need to shut. Father, open our eyes to see the harvest fields that are right in front of us and show us our part in reaping them for You. In Jesus’ name…amen.

Blessings and love this new year…

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