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To have or not to have? – New Year’s Resolutions

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Tue, Jan 08, 2013

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language and next year’s words await another voice – T. S. Elliot.

Editor: A new year has once again arrived. With all the hustle and bustle of preparing for Christmas and ending the old year with a bang, it has become a norm for many to conjure lists of resolutions for the New Year. Usually, much thought goes into these fragments of imaginary accomplishments, as persons aim to turn over a new leaf, start afresh and make changes in their lives.{{more}} The New Year is expected to bring along a new attitude in its sack of goodies. However, it is realized too late that the year only comes and goes, has nothing to offer, but thrives on the successes and downfalls of all, claims them as its own and records everything in its book of dates.

The excited and enthusiastic set about their plans as the year commences and may successfully manage to fulfil their goal throughout the year and find delight in themselves for doing so. For that, we greatly commend their efforts and determination. But what about the many who start and never finish? Was it sensible to bother trying to start at all?

First, God must be given praise for having spared us to see a New Year, as others were unfortunate not to do so. Then, we must thoughtfully recollect upon the past year and assess where we would have gone wrong and right. Sometimes, it is quite surprising that God brought us to see another year, despite our deeds… Oh for the saving grace of God! Essentially it is for those reasons he has provided another opportunity for us to ‘make things right’.

There is no rule stipulating that one must change his way of life, habits or beliefs for the sole purpose of one or more plausible acts; and for that reason it is not expected. While many can find fault with one individual, likewise an equal per cent can find goodness in him. Consequently, isn’t it possible for this same person to examine himself and find a common ground on which he can begin to mould, sow seeds of wisdom, weed out negativity and opposition, fertilize with knowledge and understanding and eventually reap the rewards of character enhancement? Crops have various periods of maturation because they are not all alike. This scenario is no different. This individual will sometimes hit hard surfaces, face periods of drought and darkness; but by having faced these conditions, he can adapt and adjust himself to flourish in difficult times and eventually yield the successes of his hard work.

Having experienced and conquered such conditions, this individual is still prone to making mistakes; but any weather conditions which may come his way, he is fully prepared to tackle and own the New Year. To re-iterate the point, whether one may make resolutions for the New Year or not, he should not force himself to fulfil them just yet; but he must first exercise discipline, decide upon the dish of choice, chew on small bites and swallow with satisfaction.

Once fully disciplined, his perspective on life has evolved and then he can proceed to make right the necessary tasks he had set about in the first place. However, by this time, he would conclude that during the period of discipline and self-discovery, most goals were completed, some being in the process of completion and only a few left on the ‘to-do-list’.

At this point, if the year has not met its end, and his tasks almost completed, then God would decide if he deserves a bonus year or years to either finish up, create more or enjoy the fruits of his labour.

Elizabeth Bullock

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