“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 (ESV)
As you all know, New Year’s Eve was this past weekend, and so many of us celebrated with our friends and family over the prospect of a new chapter in our lives. Maybe you watched the countdown or even shared your New Year’s resolutions with one another. But, have you ever wondered about the history behind these resolutions?
Interestingly enough, the concept began during the height of the Christianized Roman Empire. The word January comes from the Latin word “ianua” (ya-new-ah), meaning “door.” This symbolizes the opening to the new year and the closing of the past one, which makes it extremely apropos to designate it as the first month of the year. New Year’s resolutions became customary around this time and were mainly focused on fasting and praising the Lord.
New Year’s has always been symbolic of the phrase, “Out with old and in with the new.” It is said to be a time of setting things right emotionally, physically and spiritually. To this day, in some towns in Italy, people actually shove their old furniture and objects out of their windows to symbolize this time of rebirth. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? While this is a rather extreme custom, we here have similar traditions that embody that same idea by setting moral goals, such as reading the Bible more or spending more time with family.
Unfortunately, we usually only pursue this personal growth during times like New Year’s, but why wait a whole year for a clean slate when we have one every morning? Lamentations 3:22-23 (ESV) says, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning…” We are given 365 chances, and we choose one for the sake of tradition? This causes us to develop bad habits. The longer we wait, the harder it is to change what is second nature.
We need to make the choice to obey God and strive for individual progress every day, not just on New Year’s. My charge to you is do not wait! Grow continually and set goals for yourself every day because His mercies are new every morning!
As part of their training in Rhetoric, our students in grades ten and up are required to develop and present a brief presentation to the school body during Chapel with guidance from their instructors and school curriculum. Each student presentation must be understandable and relevant to all age groups. Sowing seeds of rhetoric training by requiring them speak to all age levels has yielded a harvest for all to enjoy.
This week’s presentation was given by Jessica G., one of our tenth grade students (pictured).
Posted on January 6, 2017
by Laurie Brooks filed under