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At the beginning of every year people make resolutions. Even if you don’t do it regularly, I’m certain that you’ve done it at least once. It’s my sense, and my own personal experience, that our New Years Resolutions usually involve our habits. Things that we do or would want to do regularly: dieting, exercise, spending time with spouse or family, praying (hopefully), going to church every Sunday (am I dreaming?), etc. Habits certainly are hard to break… and to form. The habitual, for good reason, has an ability to win out over our intentions. It takes an outward force to cause us to break old habits and make new ones.

This year is different. Just look back to the beginning of 2020. We had no idea what we were going to go through this time last year. The Pandemic though caused EVERYONE to change their habits. Most of this we didn’t care for. It was done out of necessity. We were forced to break old habits and form new ones. We worked from home instead of the office. We cooked more and learned about the banes and blessings of delivery. We utilized technology more. If we were reliant on the gym we had to learn how to exercise on our own. And God bless us in how we had to contend with the holidays and our very necessary relationships with family and friends!

The beginning of 2021 is going to be rough, but my hope is that most of the year will be devoted to our clawing our way back to a new normal. I’m not calling on you to make new resolutions. That’s probably a futile workout. What I do encourage you to do is to ask yourself these questions: what have I learned from the Pandemic? What do I value the most in life? If I were to live as if I really valued those things, what would my life look like? Ask these questions in the context of prayer. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you, give you the creativity, to make the best decisions. The advantage that we have to this exercise is that the worldwide reality has already primed us to make more change than usual.

May 2021 be a truly new year in which to discover God’s graciousness in our lives in a really original way.

“And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5.10 NRSV

Pr Ed Barnett

 

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St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church
2332 Grand Avenue
Baldwin, New York 11510
Phone (516) 223-1951
  January 2021  
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