Num 6:22-27; Gal 4:4-7; Lk 2:16-21
Civilizations around the world have been celebrating the start of each new year for at least four millennia. Today, most New Year’s festivities begin on December 31. Common traditions include attending parties, preparing special New Year’s dishes, making resolutions for the new year and watching fireworks displays.
Ringing in the New Year is a cause for celebration, for spending time with friends and family, and for offering Happy New Year wishes.
A Sage was passing through the capital city of the famous king. While he was walking, he noticed a single currency coin on the road. He picked it up. He was satisfied with his simple living and he had no use of that coin.So, he planned to donate it to the one who is in need of it. He strolled around the streets throughout the day but didn’t find anyone such. Finally, he reached the rest area and spent a night there.
Next morning, he wakes up in the morning for his daily activities and sees that a king is going for his invasion of another state with his war ready army. When the king saw the sage standing, he ordered his army to be stopped. He came to the Sage and said, “Oh Great Sage, I am going to war to win another state so that my state can be expanded. So bless me to be victorious”.
After thinking, Sage gave a single currency coin to the king! The king was confused and annoyed with this because what use he has for a single coin while he is already one of the richest kings! He curiously asked a sage, “what’s the meaning of this one coin?”
A Sage explained, “Oh Great King! I found this coin yesterday while strolling around the streets of your capital city. But I had no use of it. So, I had decided that I will donate it to someone needy. I strolled around till the evening in your capital, but found no one such. Everyone was living a happy life. It seemed that they were satisfied with what they had. So I found no one to give this coin. But today, the king of this state, still have the desire to gain more and not satisfied with what he already has, I felt you were in need of this coin.”
The King realized his mistake and gave up the planned war.
This is the new year message for us. Learn to be happy with what we have. There are many who do not have what we have, and there will be some who have more than what we have. Do not always compare. Do not waste the chance of enjoying what you have in the pursuit of what you wish to have. When our wants are less than what we have we are happy, and we call ourselves rich. When our wants are more than what we have we become unhappy and to try to amass more. It makes our life miserable.
New year is the perfect time to rearrange your goals in life and work towards them. It's that time of the year which reminds us all that even though we didn't succeed enough in the past year, there is much more to achieve in life and new possibilities will surely come our way in the next 365 days.
Before we begin a New Year we need to put the old year behind us. The years 2020 and 2021 taught us many new lessons. They changed our outlooks. Transformed our education systems and altered our views on many things. Flights were grounded. offices remained closed. children stayed at home. Isolation and lock down became common words. But humanity survived. We all adapted to new ways. Only one thing remained unchanged – Our value systems. The proverb says, trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
For new beginning for a New Year, we must first make peace with our past. It is also a time of reflection.
A man was asked to paint a boat.
He brought with him paint and brushes and began to paint the boat a bright red, as the owner asked him. While painting, he noticed that there was a small hole in the hull, and quietly repaired it. When finished painting, he received his money and left.
The next day, the owner of the boat came to the painter and presented him with a nice cheque, much higher than the payment for painting.
The painter was surprised and said "You've already paid me for painting the boat Sir!"
"But this is not for the paint job. It's for having repaired the hole in the boat."
"Ah! But it was such a small service... certainly it's not worth paying me such a high amount for something so insignificant."
"My dear friend, you do not understand. Let me tell you what happened. When I asked you to paint the boat, I forgot to mention about the hole. When the boat dried, my kids took the boat and went on a fishing trip. They did not know that there was a hole. I was not at home at that time. When I returned and noticed they had taken the boat, I was desperate because I remembered that the boat had a hole. Imagine my relief and joy when I saw them returning from fishing. Then, I examined the boat and found that you had repaired the hole! You see, now, what you did? You saved the life of my children! I do not have enough money to pay your 'small' good deed."
You may have repaired numerous 'boat holes' along the way... of several people without realizing how many lives you've saved.
In the last years challenges many people extended a helping hand to keep ups going. Let’s thank Everyone who Repaired our boat in every way like Good Wishes, thoughts, Guidance, care & prayers. (written by Sheethal Raghunathan)
You may have had some really good memories about the past one, but you never know what’s the new one is bringing for you. It’s time to be hopeful, have new dreams and make some new resolutions for the new year in your life. It’s time to connect with each other and make new year wishes. It’s time to move on and embrace what’s new. The new year means a lot of new dreams and new achievements.
Some men were travelling on a leaky old ship, in the middle of a rough and stormy sea. And they were actually fearful for their lives. They didn't know whether they were going to sink or not. So one of them went in to see the captain and said, ''Captain, are we safe?'' He said, ''Well, I'll put it to you this way.'' He said, ''The boilers on this ship are very weak and may explode at any moment.'' He said, ''Also, the ship is very old, and she's taking on water.'' So he said, ''To be very honest with you, we may have an explosion, or we may sink.'' He said, ''We may go up, or we may go down, but at any rate, we are going on.'' The proverb says, “trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths”. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
And that's the way we are as we face this new year. There may be new challenges and new demands on us. But at any rate we are going on. We're facing a brand new year, and we don't know what it's going to bring. So, no matter who, when or how. Just continue to help, sustain, wipe tears, listen attentively, because we never know when one is in need of us or when God holds a pleasant surprise for us to be helpful and important to someone. As St. Peter says, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7).
Happy New Year