The new year is always a time of reflection and looking forward.

We look back on the past year(s) and remember the things of the past.  We remember joys and sorrows, and we wonder what might have been.

We move into the new year with an anticipation of what is to come.  Some things are predictable  and some things will happen that we can’t even fathom.

In this new year, we move forward.   For some, “happy days will be here again”.   For others, fear and uncertainty rule the day.   Still, for some, apathy remains in control. Whichever perspective we ascribe to, we turn to the One who promises “I will not leave you desolate”!

What will happen in the new year?  Who knows!  What we can be confident of is that we are called to love God with all of our hearts, minds, soul, and strength.  We are also called to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.  That, if we are to call ourselves Christian, is not negotiable.

To be Christian in this world requires us to follow the example of Jesus.  We look to him as we process all that is going on around us.  We seek justice where justice is taken away.  We stand  with him against powers that would seek to oppress those who were marginalized.  We are to speak out against racism, sexism, ageism, classism, and all of the other “isms” that divide us.

I am thankful to have another year to work on being a better child of God.  As we move into this new future we have been given, I hope and pray that we, as a community of faith, will continue to learn and grow together in God’s love and as agents of change in the world according to the Gospel message we are given in Jesus Christ.  That is our mission. That is our future!

Happy New Year!

Gary