There is a lot of “natural stuff” coming at people as they begin this New Year. One of these “natural things” are the COVID updates that occur regularly.

            There are the regular reports about the effects of the pandemic on the economy, family life and our personal lives. 

            We cannot ignore these things – or we shouldn’t ignore them. We need to pay attention to what is going on around us and also what going on inside of us — i.e., in our mind and heart. 

            This post is going to give some different input. While all this other “stuff” is coming at us and we are trying to process it we also need something to help us either make some sense of it or give us strength to put it into perspective. This is why I have titled this post: A New Year Is Upon Us: Closer to Heaven!

            Yes, we are entering a New Year. It is important that we Christians remember that Jesus is Lord of 2021. Every year when we celebrate the Easter Vigil we put for numbers on the Paschal Candle in what is called the Ceremony of Light. We proclaim that: 

“Christ yesterday and today; 

the Beginning and the End; 

the Alpha; and the Omega; 

All time belongs to him; 

and all the ages; 

To him be glory and power; 

through every aga and fore ever. Amen. 

            This Easter Vigil we will put the numbers 2021 to proclaim that Jesus is Lord of every year, of all time! 

            It is very easy to forget this, so we need to remind ourselves of this foundational truth in our lives. 

            Further to this truth is that each day we arise from our beds and years year comes upon us is a day and a year that are closer to eternal life and let us pray that means heaven for us. 

            I’m sure this is not your typical “news item” that you’ll read at this time of the year but it is – I believe – very important for us to read it, hear it and let it penetrate into our hearts, our minds and our very souls. 

            This truth – that Jesus is Lord of all time (of 2021) will give us courage and serenity to live one day at a time knowing full well we are stepping closer to eternity

            If we live with this awareness we should deepen in serenity, with deeper confidence and resolve to wake up every day and do our very best to please God in whatever we do. 

            Every day we awaken God has already prepared new graces for you and me – God has had these ready from all eternity because he knows what we are going to face as we live today in this New Year and as we step closer to eternity. 

            God who is faithful will not shortchange us. God will provide the grace that we need to keep humble if we are doing really well; God will provide grace that we need if life seems like it is tanking on us and we are walking through the “dark valley.” 

            Whatever happens to you and me throughout this year – and things will happen – it is so important that we remember Jesus is Lord is 2021. 

            I want to encourage everyone to begin their day with a morning offering – offer your day to God. Thank him for waking up because that means God wants you in this world to do “his work.” Ask him – in your own words” to help you remember that you, with each step you take, approach eternity so you want to “walk well.” 

            Each day is so precious because it is our day, my day, your day and Jesus is Lord of it. 

            So walk well

            Live well 

            Pray well

            Forgive if you need to do it well 

            If you really strive to love God well then you will love others around, you even better

            Let us ask St Joseph to help us live this year as best as we can, trusting in the Father to help us take our steps with confidence as we approach him. 

            Have a blessed New Year of 2021!

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