We counted down in unison until the world flashed with an explosion of confetti, embraces, and Instagram photos. 2017 has begun. Fare thee well, 2016, in all your joys and sorrows. I’m sure we’ve all experienced a measure of each last year. We’re all human and to share in this humanity seems to carry a measure of each. Tuck away the lessons you learned from 2016, the ones that have sifted and shaped you.
Now we open our hands to 2017, closing our eyes, murmur in surrender to the God who holds each of these days. A lot of people are trying to make 2017 better than 2016. We’re making resolutions for the New Year, but what if we rattled tradition a little?
What if instead of a list of resolutions, what if instead we changed the questions we’re asking? What if we simply shifted our perspective, and altered our responses to situations?
A question I’m going to ask is one I picked up in one of Dr. Pinkham’s English classes. In the last lecture of the semester, Dr. Pinkham challenged us with the idea that one of our most valuable jobs as Christians is to ask how can I help bring healing to this situation? That stuck with me. What if we walked through each day asking how we could bring healing?
Another question to ask this year is do I act on what I believe? Friends, this can be tricky at a Christian college. It can be tempting to immerse ourselves in all these classes where we discuss theology, philosophy, religion, politics, ethics, and all the important thoughts that drive our lives, but become nothing more than arm-chair theologians, philosophers, and politicians. Conviction requires action, and that is not simply liking a cause on Facebook.
The third question is, where are the gifts in each day? You may have slept through your alarm. You may be late to that quiz, but how did you get to class? You walked on healthy legs. You wore shoes, and maybe, just maybe a fellow student smiled in greeting as you passed the Bubble. All of those are gifts.
The final question is this: how can I contribute to my community? How can I give myself to others at school? We’re being poured into so much at Nyack College, and it’s beyond amazing. How can we take what we’ve been given, and begin pouring into our community? May we ask God to heal us, to stir us to see and feel need, and to act to meet the needs of our brothers and sisters.
Happy New Year