Congratulations! You made it. We made it. We survived another year and 2006 is over and done with. For better or for worse we have made of it what we can and now it is history. The rest is up to grace. Did you stay awake long enough to countdown into the New Year? Some years it is a struggle for me – correct that, it can be sheer agony – just to stay awake by midnight. This year my family and I spent New Year’s Eve with some good friends and we laughed and danced our way into 2007.
Do you remember 1999 and all the building anxiety regarding “Y2K”? Many were convinced that the world as we knew it was coming to an end because the computers were destined to fail when the year 200 began. During the 1950s computers were coded in such a way that it was thought it would be unable to read the year 2000. Nobody really worried about it in the 1950s but by the 90s it was a growing concern. By the time programmers were seriously addressing the problem 1.2 trillion lines of code had to be checked which was essentially impossible. We were “house-hunting” in 1999 and I remember looking at a house for sale where the current owners had stock-piled supplies for a year in their bonus room.
According to many the sky was falling. But 1999 gently moved into history and we welcomed 2000 with no sign that this world was coming to an end.
The truth is every New Year has its own set of challenges and we bring to it our own collection of anxieties. Now that last year is truly last year we can focus on 2007, which is largely in front of us. At the time of this writing we still have 363 more days to leave our mark and make our contribution.
What is before us is of course largely a mystery, but how we face this New Year need not be. To be sure the fear-mongers are out there spreading the message of dread and panic feeding our insecurities. Inevitably when we are afraid and insecure we hide behind (or make) walls of doubt. The Israelites, when bordered by the Red Sea and Pharaoh’s chariots, cried out in fear and doubt. They could not see that God would see them through.
There is no question that there are plenty of things to worry about in 2007: health, aging parents, children, finances (insert your own anxiety here: _______). But the stars teach us that the sky is not falling. The Creator brought order out of chaos. Do you think God can be faithful to bring order out of our own chaos as well?
I believe so. Happy New Year and to whatever awaits you, me, us, may we be found looking forward to God’s future.