I sit here at the coffee shop admiring how we as people can look at the calendar and all of a sudden we can be excited to start over.
Yahoo! We turned the page and a new year pops up ... 2013 ... and we can start again!
I guess it is kind of exciting since the Mayan calendar ran out of pages and it looked like we were doomed. No more pages to turn ... it must be over then.
Well, we dodged that ball ... or that meteorite ... or whatever it was that would take us out. Whew ... that was close! Not!
So now here we are. By the time you see this (notice I did not say read) most will have broken our New Year’s resolutions ... to lose weight ... exercise more ... be nicer ... go to church ... stop going to church. Whatever it might have been they are probably long gone by now, a distant memory.
But it is fun to have hope isn’t it?
Hope really keeps us moving ahead. Lose hope and we get stuck. I think it would be better if the New Year began in June or July ... you know, warm and sunny outside. Flowers growing and life happening. January and you are locked inside because it is cold and gray. Sometimes it seems like the sun disappears forever.
Yep, let’s make a new constitutional amendment. Happy New Year in June! I am sure it would not take much to get through the Senate and Congress. Look at how well they handled the fiscal cliff. Smooth. Thoughtful. Caring about our future. Brilliant! ( I hope you can recognize sarcasm when it is written.)
So I am getting off track here ... sunny weather ... more hope.
Why do we think a new date on the calendar will help us lose weight, exercise or be nicer? We all love the idea of a new start, a "do over."
I love to play golf with my son. He loves to give, and take, mulligans. A mulligan is when you get to take a second shot when the first one was bad -- in the woods or in the water.
"Mulligan," he says, "I am taking a mulligan." Or he will say, “Go ahead, Dad, take a mulligan.” Nice, thanks.
So at the end of the day maybe I shoot my lowest round ever. Awesome! I don’t count the mulligans. That is the sweet deal here ... they don’t count. Never happened. Record score. Can’t wait to tell my friends about this. The famous "do over." Have to love it.
So, I think we see the New Year as a chance to have a do over. Do life better. Be nicer. Help people. Make this a better place to live.
For me, that is what I found with God, in Jesus. I got a major do over ... a huge mulligan ... my errant shots don’t count against me.
God has an amazing eraser on that pencil we suppose he keeps score with. Never stops erasing. Never keeps score.
I have been following Jesus 40 years and I have to begin every day by thanking him for my do-over life.
Sad thing is I think many of us Jesus followers forget where we began this journey. We forget he loved us and forgave us... He granted us a do over of major proportions.
We look at our score card and think to themselves, “Hey we shot a perfect score.” So we look at those around us and wonder why they can’t be like us ... perfect. We tend to forget God’s huge eraser in our lives. Humility and reality would go a long way here...our hope is in the work of Christ not ourselves.
Let me leave you with two verses.
For the person looking for hope remember this, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
I know it is familiar but this is the reason I signed up.
Now to those if us who have had your score card signed, we need to remember the next verse, “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
Happy New Year!