The decorations are coming down. The tree has been dragged out the door. The broom continues its swish across the floor as billions of pine needles flee ahead of its bristles.
Tomorrow a new year dawns.
My volunteer is already rounding up our supply of wall calendars to hang at midnight. She knows every room that needs one—my office, the kitchen by the phone, her bedroom, the bathroom—and delights in going from tack to tack leaving a colorful pack of pages in their place.
Much excitement comes with the anticipation of a brand new year. How will God bless us? What will our prayer calendar look like? Who will need divine intercession on their behalf?
Will 2017 feel different when we greet it? Though we’ll still get up and face a regular Sunday morning, still grab breakfast on our way to church, still decide where dinner will be, knowing that we’re doing all this in a year with a different number makes it not seem so mundane or so ordinary.
What will the weather be like? Winter arrived just before Christmas 2016, but if what we experienced then is an indicator of what is to come, I’m bracing myself for long days of hot cocoa, warm slippers, and fuzzy blankets.
But spring always follows. Flowers, baby squirrels, and bird nests will grace our yard. The wrens, robins, juncos, and stellar jays will return—vying with each other for a turn at the fountain.
The year 2017 is upon us. New memories will be made, past histories remembered, and in each event God will be present. In Isaiah 41:13 God says, For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”