"Here we are at the end of the old year; tomorrow will be the beginning of the new. We must bless the Lord for the many graces we have received. May it please God that by means of these fleeting years we may happily arrive at the permanent year of a blessed eternity! Let us make good use of these small passing moments, living them out in that kindness and humility which Jesus, right from the time He was a child, taught us."-St. Francis de Sales (Letters 883; O. XV, p. 315)
The end of another year often brings about a particular self examination. Our sentiments and ways of assessing the successes and down falls of our year will vary immensely in accordance to our diverse values and expectations.
Do we pause and bless the Lord for the many graces we have received? Or have some events left us hard of heart?
It is by setting our gaze toward the infinite and recognizing that these passing and fleeting moments are only a shadow of the brightness of eternity that we may gain proper perspective.
We are able to arrive at a more pleasing acceptance of our experiences; seeing all the "good, the bad, and the ugly" as part of a beautiful divine plan. Through faith we come to understand that the arrival of a new calendar year does not carry any more importance than the breaking of a new dawn. The gift of every new day brings us closer to the opportunity to love and serve God, and to live our lives with a humble kindness as we strive to achieve our goals.
Our joys and our new beginnings do not reserve themselves for midnight on December 31st. Our loving Father peperpetually pours forth His loving kindness, unconditional love, and His mercy.
As we pause and reflect at the end of this 'old year' may we come to recognize the value and gift of the small and passing moments filled with the immensty of God's grace. May we begin 2015 in thanksgiving to our Lord for the gift of another moment and opportunity to experience His love by sharing this love with one another. (CC)