Thanks 2014My dear friends!
Normally we keep our bills and receipts. Well not all, but the important ones. We need some of them for tax returns or jut keep them to have a memory of a celebration or of a shopping…

Now we are at the end of the year. We are gathered in this church on the last day of the year as God’s community. Here we don’t have to submit any of our bills. Nevertheless, this day brings in us many memories… Many people and experiences, many life stories may go through our minds.

Now, I also look at my life in the last minutes of this year: my many encounters with people, my dealing with conflicts…
How they affected my life?
What do I do with this year, that’s over in a few hours?
So many questions come in my mind…

Among these questions it’s quite good to have a short glance at our paths, in this past year. This may be helpful to do some course correction. This year 2014 is going to end, but it is only a portion of our long life. This is the last day of this year, but not the end : we have to continue for our goals with courage and determination I the coming year.

Past is past. I can not change it any more. But I can learn from it and draw conclusions.
Above all, the words of the Lord should strengthen us:
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened…“(Mt 11, 28)
This sentence tells me that God is in the new year for me, just like in the old days. He gives me his peace and strength in this new time.
I must trust in him, even in my good and not so good experiences and experiences.
Now, we are entering a new year. We look forward to it with pleasure.
But I am not sure of the time in this new year. Of course, I can schedule some of my appointments, but the time is in God’s hands; it is his gift to us. He says ‘yes’ to new experiences and new life, but especially ‘Yes’ to rediscover and reanimate our faith in him…
The Protestant theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer put it wonderfully in the song:
“Surrounded by good powers, faithful and still,
wonderfully protected and comforted–
in this way I want to live these days with you
and go with you into a new year…
Wonderfully secured by good powers,
we confidently await what may come.
God is with us in the evening and the morning,
and most certainly in each new day.”

Sure, if we put aside the thoughts of the old days and trustingly place the coming year in the hands of God, we will surely enjoy his love and care. And this new year will be a blessing to us.

Now we let us adopt these last hours of the year with gratitude.
It is true that, some moments in life were not worth to be grateful. Nevertheless, we give thanks even for these bad experiences.
But with renewed hope we will sing and praise God together; We will praise, and thank his love for everything. For He is with us.
For his ever presence, let us thank him.

–Thomas Kalathil

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