Every New Year’s Day for the past 31 years I’ve reflected on an event that occurred January 1, 1983. My dear father, Martin Herbert Otto Kieschnick, went to heaven that day at the tender age of 66 years, 6 months, 2 days. I miss him every day and thank God for his influence in my life.
That influence continues to be exerted upon our entire family through my dear mother, Elda Mary Hellman Kieschnick, now 97 years, 8 months, 20 days of age. With the significant exception of Dad’s passing and in light of Mom’s effervescent spirit and cheerful outlook on life, most of my New Year thoughts look through a windshield, not a rear view mirror.
The Complete Speaker’s Almanac points out that the month of January is named after the Roman god Janus: “This particular Roman god had two faces, enabling him to look ahead toward the future and back at the past at the same time. As we get rid of an old year and look forward to a new one, we all try to be a little like Janus. We know through experience what we did wrong and what we did right, and hope to do better this year. Some people make ambitious New Year’s resolutions; others just take a deep breath and hope for the best.…”
How about you? Are you looking back or looking ahead? Are you making ambitious New Year’s resolutions or just hoping for the best? Resolutions have a way of losing their urgency shortly after the New Year rolls around. And I’ve never been one simply to hope for the best without trying to do what I felt necessary for the best to occur, with God’s abundant blessing. My reflections and projections, hopes and prayers for the New Year go hand in hand.
With that in mind, I share with you A New Year’s Wish from an anonymous source:
May God make your year a happy one!
Not by shielding you from all sorrows and pain, but by strengthening you to bear it, as it comes;
Not by making your path easy, but by making you sturdy to travel any path;
Not by taking hardships from you, but by taking fear from your heart;
Not by granting you unbroken sunshine, but by keeping your face bright, even in the shadows;
Not by making your life always pleasant, but by showing you when people and their causes need you most, and by making you anxious to be there to help.
And A New Year’s Prayer also from an unknown author:
Spirit of the Risen Christ, be with us today and always.
Be our Light, our Guide, and our Comforter.
Be our Strength, our Courage, and our Sanctifier.
May this New Year be a time of deep spiritual growth: a time of welcoming your graces and gifts; a time for forgiving freely and unconditionally; a time for growing in virtue and goodness.
Come, Holy Spirit! Be with us today and always! Amen!
Terry and I pray God’s abundant love, peace, hope and joy will come to you in the year ahead!