A new day. A new year. But in each, including tomorrow and all the tomorrows which dawn, I don’t look at the time in terms of what the clock indicates. I look at time and our very lives and the options we have in living to be God’s gracious and loving gifts. So, the deeper focus is upon God and how my/our relationship with God can be better focused and experienced and strengthened.
I am sure each of us in one manner or content from another will make resolutions. I’m also pretty clear—and this is more a confession than indictment—the resolutions may have a shelf life of, let me be generous, maybe a month.
This morning for how the New Year might happen, I share some wise and connecting thought from a valued clergy colleague, Peter Bauer. He and I have much in common…we are sons of Portland, Oregon and each finds perhaps the greatest corner of God’s creation to be sitting on the beach in front of Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach, Oregon. Peter is not only ordained in the United Church of Christ, he’s a therapist and has served our country and denomination as an Army Chaplain…and knows more than anyone I know about the stress impacting the lives of our faithful soldiers after serving in battle, especially what has happened to so many in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also writes for the Huffington Post. So, Peter? Thank you for your recent thought. Better than good words…and maybe…yep, maybe, hopefully definitely, your offering of living each new day will make it into February.
“We also need to pay more attention to our inner lives, to our spirit. There are tremendous problems that are confronting our world right now and many of us are feeling a tremendous physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual drain. We need to do whatever we can to replenish our well, watch a sunset, hear a symphony, cradle an infant, walk a labyrinth, say a prayer; mediate in silence. Time attending to the needs of the soul is crucial for all of us to continue to develop as healthy and whole human beings.
The New Year year promises to be an eventful one. What can we do to be mindful participants in the life of our planet? What can we do to be mindful regarding what we need to do to take care of ourselves, our lives, our families, our inner spirit? How do we recalibrate the GPS of our souls that will provide direction and guidance for us?
My prayer is that this New Year will be an amazing period of growth for you, for me, indeed for our entire world. This certainly won’t be realized without all of our concerted work, our attention, intellect, discernment and love and compassion.
May we all become more civil, listen, read, talk, pray and meditate and engage each other to help our lives and the lives of all. May it be so.”