Monday, January 3, 2011

I've always looked forward to the last week of the year. It was usually a relaxed week with down time from work and ample time with family and friends. For years we celebrated New Year's Eve with two couples who are close friends here in Minnesota and then for the last several years we have been in Michigan to bring in the New Year. That is where I was this year, gathering with close friends to bring an end to 2010 and welcome in 2011.

It proved to be a much more difficult experience than I had anticipated. Our tradition as friends has been to go outside at 11:58 p.m. to light sparklers and sing "auld lang syne" and welcome in the new year with hugs and kisses. This year at about 11:15 p.m. I left the party, saying goodnight to my friends, and headed back to my house in Bethany. I was not emotionally prepared to welcome in the new year without my spouse. I did not have a special somone to hug and begin a new year with a kiss. It seemed best to let the new year slip into being in the quiet aloneness of my house as I remembered and meditated and prayed.

My memories were very personal...very emotional...very precious.
My meditation was on a God who is faithful and comforting and empowering.
My prayer was one of thankfulness and a request for help in moving on in the year ahead.

At 11:58 p.m. I personalized the words of a prayer of St. Augustine sent me by a friend who lost her husband 3 years ago. The prayer went like this:
"God of my life, there are days when the burdens I carry chafe my shoulders and weigh me down; when the road seems dreary and endless, the skies grey and threatening; when my life has no music in it, and my heart is lonely, and my soul has lost its courage. Flood the path ahead with light, run my eyes to where the sky is full of promise; tune my heart to brave music; give me the sense of comradeship with heroes and saints of every age; and so quicken my spirit that I may be able to encourage the souls of all who journey on the road of life, to Your honor and glory. Amen"

That is by prayer:
  • A path that is filled with light.
  • Skies that are full of promise.
  • Ears that are tuned to brave music.
  • A sense of comradeship with all those who have gone on before.
  • A spirit that is quickened by The Spirit.

That is my prayer...not just for myself...but for each of you as well. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

1 comment:

  1. Hi John,

    It was nice to see you briefly on New Year Eve. We sang this song on Sunday and I thought of you. I hope you find it encouraging: