For a few years Joy and I made “time capsules” with our children. On New Year’s Eve we’d sit down together and all of us would answer a few questions on a piece of paper. We’d write down the name of a favorite book we had read or what our favorite song was at that particular time. The children would jot down their height and their age. We would all write down what we were looking forward to in the new year and what we hoped would happen during the coming months. When we were finished we’d “seal” our answers in a canister and “hide” it among the Christmas decorations that would soon be packed up and put away until next year. It was always a little mysterious to think that in “the future” we’d open this canister up and look over its contents. Twelve months later we’d find the capsule and see what we had written. It was a playful way to recall the events of the year, to see the changes that had taken place and to mark the passage of time.
As we begin the new year it is interesting to reflect upon what has changed over the course of the past twelve months. For example Joy and I didn’t know we’d be living on Cape Cod or that we’d be sharing life and ministry with all of you in South Yarmouth. What unexpected blessings! Every year some things in our lives stay the same, but others change. Some of these changes may have been anticipated, but others can come as a surprise. Some are welcome others are not.
The passage of time is a mysterious thing. There is something sacred about the different cycles of life, the movement of the seasons and the rhythms of nature. This coming year will also undoubtedly be filled with a number of rich experiences, some things we anticipate and a few surprises. What are you looking forward to in this new year? What might you be a bit anxious about as you look ahead to the next few months? As people of faith we claim that through every season and time of year God is faithful. Throughout the passage of time there is the steady love and grace of God. The experience of this grace grounds us and gives us confidence as we face each new year. It enables us to joyfully and humbly look forward to all that the future holds for us.
Joy and I look forward to sharing in this new year with you all!