It’s New Year’s Eve! As we leave the old and bring in the new…what are your thoughts about the future?
Counting down at midnight, what do you think will be uppermost in your mind about what’s ahead?
I was taking down my Christmas tree and all the family decorations just yesterday and I mused about the correlation that this often has in our minds to saying ‘goodbye’ to an old year and ushering in the new one.
It never changes. We do it at this time of the year, every year.
And yet we hope for a ‘better tomorrow’ and wish one another health and happiness as we approach the countdown. Every year. Someone once said the ‘definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result’.
Truth is, if we just pack away the ‘old’ and bring it out again in the future…how have we moved forward?
………..5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1! HAPPY NEW YEAR!
And it’s here. The new slate upon which to write. A year that’s never been lived. The hope that things will all be different now…
As I packed away the beautiful coloured baubles into their boxes and stacked each one neatly in its place up high in the storage cupboard, I couldn’t help but think to myself….this will all be away now until the end of the new year, when I’ll bring it all out and put it on display…again. Been doing it for decades.
The Christmas tree now looks bare. It’s sad to see it being dismantled. The Santa hats have been flung around the place, waiting for collection. Listlessly they hang, as if nobody cares now, when last week we were all running around with the red and white adornments on our heads wishing health and happiness to all. Now they lay like drunken and spent bodies after a wild NYE party.
The angel dolls, so carefully placed next to Christmas candles, have spent the last month adorning my lounge room, silently singing carols and wishing us good cheer. Now they sleep peacefully in the box of Christmas things, like resposing princesses, waiting for their chance to shine again.
Not sad, but thought provoking. Here are a few of my own thoughts – call them my resolutions if you will – as I start towards the new year of 2014:
REFLECTION is always good!
1. We can grow by allowing ourselves to think.
I know, I know…obvious, right?
But it’s something that we ‘prefectionistas’ don’t necessarily allow ourselves the luxury of doing. “Necessity is the mother of invention”, my Mum always said…. So when we come to the place of realising that it’s so necessary to reflect, and not just swiftly move on…that’s when change can actually happen in us. Do I allow myself to do that in my busy and bustling world?
Take it easy! Put up your feet, make a cuppa and reflect on YOU. You’re so worth it!
2. We can grow by allowing ourselves to dismantle.
What?! But I’m a mother, a wife, a woman of the 21st century…it’s dangerous and vulnerability rules when I think about this – and yes, that’s the point! We grow the most in our character when we are the most vulnerable, but then are open to change and move forward. Before the Creator of all things…let it all hang out! In the private place of devotion to Jesus, you can. And it’s entirely possible, that things will be different from this moment on.
Let your hair down! Allow yourself to ‘deconstruct’, not in an indulgent way, but before Jesus himself…being honest, believing for the best for YOU in the new year.
3. We can grow by allowing ourselves grace.
Decide on a new colour scheme for the Christmas tree next year. (I can almost hear you sucking in your breath as your heart beats wildly in your chest…too much?) Yes, tradition is good, but it can’t rule you. Let God place a new dream, a new pattern of His thinking, a new vision in your heart. don’t box yourself in to the old perameters! (definition: ‘a limit or boundary that defines the scope of a particular process or activity’}
… think OUTSIDE of that box. Why can’t things be different for you next year? It’s just a decision away!
Think about this:
* What would I have changed?
* What could I have done differently? (it may even help to write it down in your journal!)
* What could I have done more effectively? (character, relationship building, career/family?)
* How can I avoid the mistakes of the past being repeated in this approaching new year?
* What can I leave behind?
* What is useful that can be packed safely away but brought out another day?
Next year…newness may rule. Or not. That’s my decision. Bring it on!
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