It’s once again time for a new year to begin, or as a good friend said to me on December 30, “Good time for a restart, and fresh inspiration. Rest up from the last trip, cuz it’s time for another trip around the sun!” The Japanese reportedly have “Bonenkai,” or “Forget the Year” parties in which they burn their old calendars and celebrate the new year. There is something to be said for moving on, by dealing appropriately with the past. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” The Apostle Paul wrote, “One thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on” (Philippians 3:13-14). One of my favorite New Year’s quotes is from a poem first published in 1908, “And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year: ‘Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.’ And he replied: ‘Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God. That shall be to you, better than light and safer than a known way.'” Happy New Year!
Dr. Dan Crawford, Senior Professor at Southwestern Baptist Seminary, is the WestCoast Baptist Association’s Spiritual Life & Leadership Mentor. Follow Dan on Twitter @DrDanRC and Facebook www.facebook.com/dan.crawford.