Happy New Year

Happy New Year. I pray that things are going well with you. I hope that you had a great Christmas celebration and holiday.
After the hype of Christmas, before we get to Lent, here we are in Epiphany considered as, “ordinary time”.
A new year has begun, and everyone speaks of their hopes and dreams. We expect that our lives will be better. There can be newness of life in this year. There are new projects to complete and new goals to achieve.
Yet for many persons, mean 2018 is the continuation of 2017. Nothing will change. Our worries and uncertainty remain. Someone is still trying to adjust to a devastating diagnosis. Someone is trying to overcome addiction. Someone is still looking for a job. Someone is longing for the conflict in a relationship to end. For some people, the New Year is simply last year warmed over.
When life is not going well as I plan, I reflect on God’s promises. I knew God is always with me. I believed God has a future for me. I needed to go back to my call to ministry and remember the assurance I received that when God calls, God also paves the way. In looking back I could move forward.
All of us have a future that we need, at one time or another, to “get back to”. We lose our way, we mess up our relationship, we become selfish trying to do things our way. When we go back, we can reclaim what we’ve lost and recapture a future that excites us in the ordinary time. Come back to God’s future.
When Hebrew people were in exile, theyhave lost their homes, their jobs, and many of their traditions. They got distracted from God’s future for them. As a respected leader, prophet Jeremiah offers them words of comfort and hope as they face the future. Jeremiah tells the people that God has plans for them. God’s plan will recapture their hope and their God-ordained future. Jeremiah invites the people to look beyond their present circumstances back to God’s future.
I believe that same invitation is extended to us this day. Let’s come back to God’s future. Look beyond your present circumstances and re-envision God’s future for you. That future is exciting even in ordinary time. The plans God has are for peace and prosperity, not for harm or evil. Come back to God’s future.
I invite you to go to God in prayer. Prayer works. Prayer can transform people and situation. Prayer can change you and me. Prayer covers the soul with power and bring confidence in God. May God be with you through new year and fill you with peace, love, joy and hope. May this day and the days ahead hold many blessings for you and your family.
Happy New Year.
Vathanak Heang