2019: Another Year Is Gone

by Tom Wacaster

Someone once noted, "Many people look forward to the New Year for a new start on old habits." I don't know who wrote those pithy words, but he must have been some blood kin to Solomon. The passing of one year and the dawn of the next always seems to bring out the best of good intentions. In the final analysis, however, New Year's Eve is no different than any other night and New Year's Day quickly becomes just one more day on a fresh calendar. The earth continues to rotate on its axis; there is nothing in our universe that somehow marks the passing of yet another twelve months. Why is it that we tend to think more soberly and seriously on matters eternal this time of the year? What is it that compels us to make New Year's resolutions, bid the old year goodbye, and look forward with renewed anticipation and joyful expectation on what the next 365 days will bring us? It is the realization that we have 365 days on the calendar to do with as we may, in hopes that by this time next year we will be able to look back with a certain sense of satisfaction and as little regret as possible for having failed to spend our time, use our talents, or take advantage of all those opportunities given to us by God.

In 1971, the late Glen Campbell wrote what I consider to be one of his best songs. The title, 'Today Is Mine,' and the lyrics remind us that each new day brings us untold opportunities:

When the sun came up this morning
I took the time to watch it rise;
And as its beauty struck the darkness
From the sky
I thought how small and unimportant,
All my troubles seem to be;
And how lucky another day
Belongs to me.

And as the sleepy world around me
Woke up to greet the day,
All its silent beauty
Seemed to say.
"So what, my friend, if all your dreams
You haven't realized;
Just look around you
You've got a new day to try."

Chorus:
Today is mine, today is mine
To do with what I will
Today is mine
My own special cup to fill
To die a little that I might learn to live
To take from life that I might learn to give
Today is mine

Now that 2019 is history, what are you going to make of 2020?  Will the next 365 days be a repeat of the previous? Let me encourage you to make this year a year that will make a difference in your life. This means that resolutions need to be thrown into the dust bins of forgotten promises. Unfortunately, "Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account" (Oscar Wilde). Quit making resolutions and determine that you are going to truly resolve to apply some of the principles of God's word to your life. The only significant change is that which is lasting.  Anything else is simply wishful thinking. I'll close with the following:

Another year to stand and watch
The old year passing in review;
And then to know before us lies
Another whence to start anew.

Another year for us to mold
Our lives according to His will;
Another year in which to find
The place that we alone can fill.

Another year prepares for all
A book with pages clean and white,
And what we do or leave undone
Determines what its hand shall write.
-- George W. Wiseman