I think what makes today, New Year's Day, so special is that we all get to begin a new year together. We don't have a say in whether or not we want it to be 2017. In fact, as sure at the clock struck 12:00a.m. it became 2017- like it or not. You don't get to say, "I think I’m just gonna stay right here in 2016, ya'll go on without me." As long as you are alive, as long as you have breath in your body, you roll with the tide and enter into the new year. New Year's doesn't always happen at the same that time for everyone. Here's what I mean. New Year's by definition is the first day of a new year. So, who decides what is the first day of a new year? We do. Think about it. Every year around the mid to the end of August the school system decides when the NEW school year is going to begin and thus, we all (parents, grandparents, students, teachers, stores, community, etc..) embark upon a new school year. New year's are dates on a calendar that change the trajectory of our lives. Not only do you have a say in when YOUR new year will be, you also have it say in its trajectory. On December 14, 2002 I became Mrs. Gia Roberts. Yes! I was the happiest girl you ever did see. I flipped the pages of my life's calendar and landed on a new year. Nope, it wasn't January, but I decided that December 14, 2002 was the first day of a new start for me...and so it was. Let’s take September 11th for example. Even though it was a tragic day in the history of The United State of America, it was also a New Year's day that unified us. It unified us because we were all aware of the fact that OUR collective lives would never be the same again. Together, we flipped the pages of our calendar and landed on a new year that was very different from any year we had ever experienced. After Jesus' death the disciples faced a NEW YEAR...things were most definitely going to be different for them--forever. Their leader, friend, Lord, teacher, and comforter was gone. They watched him ascend right before their eyes. What were they to do? How were they to carry on? How were they to continue this work? Of themselves they had no power. In the midst of this despair, they went to a familiar place -The Upper Room. The Upper Room was a place where they had met with Jesus in times past. The Upper Room was a place where they ate with him, communed with him, and sat with him as he told them about his purpose. It was a place of familiarity. They could probably imagine him sitting amongst them. His words resounding in their hearts, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever;” John 14:16. Here's the meat and potatoes of it all. You are not alone. REPEAT after me: "I am not alone." Say it with conviction: "I am NOT alone." January 1, 2017 might be a collective new year that means very little to you right now. But here is some encouragement for YOUR personal new year's days that is sure to come. Your help cometh. "...wait for the promise of the Father, which saith he, ye have heard of me." Acts 1:4 I find solace in the words of Christ which tell me that no matter what the new year brings, I am not alone.
"Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee." Deuteronomy 31:6