Thursday, December 30, 2010

A New Year

January marks a new year. It is named after the Roman god, Janus. Janus had two faces, one that looked at the past and the other that looked to the future. Now we know there is only one God. (Dt. 6:4) But sometimes, because of our fallen nature, we act like a god, knowing the past and desiring to know the future. Knowing the past is easy. We have memories of what happened last year. But knowing the future is something we cannot do. Sure we make plans. And even God reminds us that while we make plans, He has already decided the outcome. (Pr. 16:33, 19:21) So, given the nature of our limitations and knowledge of God’s providence, how should we live into the new year, into the future?

Our inability to know the future is our call to trust God, our Father, all the more. We should accept the fact that He has ordained every appointment that will take place. Our wishes and dreams should be prayers that include “in accordance with Your will!” St. James reminds us of our pride when we think we can make the future go according to our desires, Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” James 4:13-15NIV.

The truth is we do not know what will happen tomorrow. But remember your disappointments this past year. Disappointments occur when our expectations or plans are unfulfilled. A surprise occurs when there is no plan or expectation. We are not God. We cannot go back and change our disappointments. But we can look to the future in the knowledge that all things work together for those who love God, (Rom. 8:28) and therefore, are willing to let God surprise us daily as we submit to His perfect will by saying, Thy will be done, on earth as it is heaven!