Where is God in the New Year?

by Paul Gueldner

My, how the time flies. As I get older, the days just seem to rush by. When we are children, the afternoon seems so long, where we can lay in the grass, watch the ants move about, and notice the dance of the wind on the leaves of the trees. When working life begins, our time is taken up in meetings, phone calls, and other duties as assigned. The clock does not stop when we get home, with a million things to accomplish yet today. Before we know it, many days have passed under the bridge.

With 2017 on the doorstep and moving in, another year has passed. Has it been a good year, a bad year, or something in between? If you have had sorrows, I feel your pain. If you have had joys and successes, I share in that too.

What will 2017 bring? We each stare out at the long expanse of the year and wonder the same thing. There are possibilities for great joys and great sorrows every year. If you have avoided the sorrows, then you are indeed fortunate. For me, the Lord is my companion both in good times and in bad. There are times when I do not see him, but I know he is there. Those may be the times when I am being held up by his strong hands, or the hands of those he loves, my neighbors, friends, and family.

We look out at 2017 with much hope for the future. There are babies to be born. There are weddings to attend. There are anniversaries to celebrate. There are plans to keep. In point of fact, life will go on. We wait in anticipation of the Lord’s second coming, but, in the meantime, we are charged to live on this earth, contributing to society, often in ways different from others. Let your light shine among people, that they may see the Lord in you!

We may also look out at 2017 with trepidation of the future. As older loved ones age or become frail, the finality of life’s end may become more apparent. We seem to hear more and more each day, of those who have lost their lives to drugs, illness, terror, or accidents. The strife in our country is real and everyone needs to work at building fences, foundations, and collaborating for the greater good. Jesus came to save the world.

Where is God in all of this? I say he is in the thick of it! Wherever you go, there he is. You may not always see him, but he is there. When someone opens a door unexpectedly for you, there he is. When someone stops to help when your car breaks down, there he is. When you are at the hospital, waiting for word on your loved one, and a nurse or doctor has a kind word, or any word at all to calm the worry, there he is.

May you continue to “see” the Lord in your everydayness in 2017. May you keep your eyes “open” for ways to help another or contribute to our society, building up, not breaking down. May you continue to take care of the “small” things while watching the events unfold on the “large” things.

Paul Gueldner is a member of the Spiritual Care Team at Prince of Peace.

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