Christmas as celebrated on the 25th is over for 2012, but there is still much to do. The very spirit of giving that surrounds Christmas can not be contained a day, a week, or even a year. (And yes, my Christmas clock, has begun the countdown to Christmas 2013…)
My week was a fun filled, family weekend. Alyssa, my oldest showed up with children on Saturday and that “began” my holiday weekend with friends and family. I was able to get a candlelight service. More friends and family. Tuesday was the main event here as the meal began it’s route towards the holiday table at 2PM. Foods, snacks, traditional turkey, egg nog and lots of everything else. It was fun. My son had asked if a few friends could come, so that happened. My children and grandchildren…it was a full and “noisy” day. Lots of fun. I am so glad we did it.Last year was slightly different. I had felt strongly that 2011 was going to be a changing Christmas, so I had decided to purchase an ornament for each of my children, dating them and signing them. I felt change is in the air. I inscribed them with the following verse. Psalm 55:16 “As for me, I call to God, and the LORD saves me.” Little did I know how many changes. Moves and more.
A lot of today will be a day of reflection on what are the next steps with my life, my family and business. My wife and I began a dialog about what we see and what is to come for us. Change is never easy or simple, but to avoid what may need to be changed or being forced to change is more difficult.
Last year I was dealing with a head injury from a fall. This year more trips to doctors and tests. Well, at least that did not change! 🙂
I have spent a lot of the week thinking about The New England Flame, the place it “plays” in the community and what can make it better, more efficient and encourage more. I have devoted some of that time to discussions with others and their thoughts, Out of these conversations and thought process, I think we are seeing the path through 2013. More will be coming.
This week represents what I and others have called the third in the trinity of holidays “series.” (Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years.) And like so many things the last thing “said” often bears strong importance. Whether there is a real change that happens January 1 may be up for discussion, but it is clear that many place strong emphasis on the changes a new year brings about, empowering them for the coming year.
I look back at all the changes in my life over 2012 and I see that there has been a frustration that has grown in me to see things change. Unlike the weather of New England that always is in flux, we are in many respects the “captain” of our ship and the controller of our destiny. Many will make “resolutions” about the coming year. (Ever notice that is “re-solutions”? Maybe that means we had the solution and need to revisit it.) It irritates me to hear so many blame their lot in life on parents, teachers, bosses, etc.. We are the catalyst of change.
Resolution means to be determined, fixed on the path. Never giving up. Having said that I am not a big resolution maker. I think it bothers my wife sometimes. If I am going to do something, I just choose to do it and move ahead. If I eat too much, I cut back the next day. I think goals are important and I do have them. I just don’t put a pile of them on my life while I am still recovering from Christmas. I tend to flow more, calculating where I want to be and making minor changes rather than big sweeping changes.
In 2000 many awaited the end of the world. (Y2K) Now many think that was a better time! Many of my friends were just starting to get rid of the final barrels of flour and sugar, only to have the suggestion, “you might want to stock up” pop up in the news. (Me, I watched Y2K celebrations on my computer, while many friends were holed up.) I think we need to prepare. Many were not ready for Irene in New England. Preparation is not only physical, but perhaps emotional and spiritual. I think the coming days will place requirements on all three areas. My life will have to be simpler, more fun and more walks. (Funny, that is what my grandparents did!)
As we come up to 2013, I choose to remember the good things in my life this week. My wife, my children, my grandchildren and my friends. Add God in the mix and what else could I ask for?
And some simple thoughts.
- Parents are better than no parents.
- Relationships are better than no relationships.
- Working is better than not working.
- Having money is better than not having money.
A longtime friend and area pastor recently wrote a book, One Life To Give, a documentation of 20 years of devotion to short term mission trips. One to two weeks. Funny how people can make one to two weeks fruitful. Even funnier how much one accomplishes when they are getting ready to go on vacation.
So, maybe there is a resolution for the coming year for me and others. Am I willing to make my life count? And if so, what direction will I go? And having decided, will I stick to it? I think maybe that is the answer. I resolve to make my life and my resources count.
Did we not already see this???
“And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”
Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not. ~Dr. Seuss