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New Every Morning

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A new year's resolution from Gary's Faith Walk

The seasonal rituals are complete. Christmas cards gone from the window sill. Nutcrackers packed away in their special tin until next December. Cardboard boxes broken down and recycled at the dump. The last of the wonderful pecan ball cookies my mother bakes each year joyfully eaten. And, the annual new calendar from St. Petersburg, Russia now hanging it its place announcing the arrival of 2012.

Where will this faith walk I am on lead me in the months ahead? 

How will the guiding of the Spirit connect me with the work of human beings and the presence of the Divine across the year? 

Will snowshoeing into the Selkirks for the wolverine project of Idaho Fish and Game and Friends of Scotchman Peaks give me new insight into creation and the fullness of life on earth?

Will my March trip to Russia (my 23rd) open new doors of understanding and cooperation with Christians still renewing themselves after the brutality of the communist era?

Will Tessa Anne’s one year birthday in April allow me to see anew the imageo dei, the image of God in the face of this infant child, my granddaughter? 

How will the August landing of the Mars Science Laboratory “Curiosity” on that distant planet contribute to my, to our, understanding of our place in the universe?

And, can the campaign and election of our President be a pathway to “do justice” as we are charged in the Hebrew scriptures?

January days and long winter nights can create space for reflecting on the past and pondering the future. I for one seek to learn from the past, whether that be the events and interactions of 2011 or years before. But, learning from my actions is not the same as being held captive by them. 

Even the heavily burdened author of the Book of Lamentations found ways to look at the future.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; 

they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

“New every morning”—what a way to hold hopes for 2012. If I let myself live into newness, I can move beyond pessimism, skepticism, and negativity. I can take a step away from the unemployment figures in the state and across the nation. I can lift up from the pessimism of the paltry results of the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban, South Africa. I can even move beyond my deep disappointment in the U.S. Congress of 2011. 

“New every morning” reminds me of both my responsibilities and my obligations. I am called by God to be engaged. I am called to use the talents I have been given to work for change. And, I am obliged to live out these days as an active citizen of my community, my nation, and even the world.

Too Pollyanna? Too much “glass half full?” No, I don’t think so. Rather, I have been offered a lens through which to view the twelve months ahead.

So, 2011 is behind me. 2012 presents itself in its fullness. As for me, I’ll work toward meeting the year one morning at a time.

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Author info

Gary Payton Gary Payton is on a Faith Walk that takes him to Russia, Eastern Europe and Sandpoint, Idaho

Tagged as:

Scotchman Peaks, Russia, wolverine, New Year, Faith Walk, Gary Payton, Tessa Anne, Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity, Presidential campaign, Lamentations, UN Climate Change Conference, Pollyanna

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