The end of a year and the beginning of a new one, usually cause people to
reflect on what has passed and look forward to better things in the future. Of
course, we all know that broken resolutions are proverbial. Can we break this
The future is untouched
As a New Year
stretches before us, it offers us the chance of a new beginning. It’s
hard to mess up tomorrow before it dawns but no doubt it can happen.
Tomorrow’s destiny is being carved out by the actions of today. Just the
same, there is some comfort in the thought that the future offers something
new: a change, a new set of more favourable circumstances.
The fact that vague
hopes and wishful thinking are so notoriously disappointing forbids me to
encourage people with a few words of pleasant philosophy about a brighter
future. The trouble is, we are all carriers. Some will inevitably carry a
virus over the threshold into another year. All of us carry emotional baggage
gathered over the years. Personal characteristics often reveal a proneness to
various kinds of failure that just keep recurring.
The future becomes like the past because it’s what lurks within us that
makes or breaks our happiness much more than the circumstances we are facing.
We so often spend time trying to change everything but ourselves.
Masses of people feel trapped between a past they would rather forget and a
future which threatens to be more of the same.
I sympathise with the feeling. It calls for something more than good advice,
though that may be at least a start. It calls for more than better luck
— which is totally out of our hands even if there is such a thing.
Dealing with what we are by nature holds the key to our escape from the
dilemma. But who, what, can change our nature? Or can we have a new one? Yes,
a new nature, a new set of active principles can be implanted in people by
Almighty God. I have experienced it as have countless others.
One clear statement about it is: “If anyone is in Christ he is a new
creation; the old has gone, the new has come”
(2 Corinthians chapter 5, verse 17).
In this way, the future can be different. You can carry something new across
the threshold into tomorrow. A life cleansed from all the sin that has marred
the past, and both the desire and power to be different within.
A God-oriented person is not bound to the slavery of circumstance but is
enjoying a dimension of life that is found nowhere else.
We are not made perfect nor is life problem free, but the new has come, and
no-one who has it would trade it for the old.