New Year's Eve. All across the world people are celebrating in different ways. Hundreds of thousands gather in New York City, some go out and party till the wee hours of the morning, and others stay up and play games with family and friends.
We aren't really the "partying kind". We tend to just relax as the clock slowly ticks us into the new year. Today also happens to be my parents' anniversary (Happy Anniversary Daddy and Mama!!!!!) and we traditionally go out to a nice restaurant to celebrate.
This year I have decided that I will not stay up and watch the ball drop. I know, I'm no fun. But really, how is it going to be any different tonight than it was last year, or the year before that, or the year before that? I prefer to get a good nights sleep so I can be rested for church in the morning. Of course, the community fireworks exhibition (which usually lasts until the sun comes up) may complicate things slightly...
I find it very fitting that the first day of the new year is a Sunday. What better way to make a fresh start than to spend a day in worship and praise of our Maker? Apart from Him, nothing we can do can make this new year any better than the last. No matter how long my resolutions list is, I know that by the 6th of January I'll be slipping back into the same unresolved state of the holidays if I am not constantly asking for His help.
One thing that this past year has taught me, or more accurately, what it has confirmed yet again, is how easy it is for me to rely on myself for the day to day grind and only turn to God when I have a real problem. It's as if I have two filing cabinets for my problems. The one labeled "God" contains problems like being kind to a certain person, where the money to put gas in my car is going to come from, or how to encourage a friend going through a hard time. The other cabinet is labeled "Me" and it contains little things. The little problems would be like being patient with my little sister when she leaves the dishes for me when we both know that it is her turn, is that really a good book for me to read, or being respectful to my parents even when I don't like what they are doing.
I think that this is something we all do to a certain extent. It is our human nature to want to "be in control". As Christians, we are to put all of our trust in Christ and relinquish every aspect of our lives to Him. But there are some of us who hand everything over, but with some strings attached. We don't like the idea of not being able to snatch things back into our own hands when things stop going according to our plans. Or, some of us hand parts of our lives over to Him and keep the seemingly insignificant things for ourselves so that we can at least partially be in control. I mean, God doesn't care about the little things does He? After watching little things that I attempted to handle on my own crumble around my ears, I am convinced that He absolutely does!
So as for me, on this last day of 2011, I am praying that God will help me learn from my mistakes, put all of my trust in Him and remember that His way is always better than anything I could come up with on my own. I am praying that He will give me patience and wisdom even in the little things because I know that I am nothing without Him even when I'm washing dishes or doing laundry. I pray that He will provide me with the strength and wisdom needed to encounter the trials and temptations that this new year will bring and that He will continue conform me to His image and pour out His grace and mercy on this sinner.
Farewell 2011. Hello 2012. I look forward to see what God has in store for this new year!
Goodnight everyone! :)