Bonum Novum Annum

bw3in ephesus


Why is new important
If old can do the job?

Why a cause to celebrate
Or perchance to sob?

Thank Julius for the calendar
It didn’t come from God.

It seems so strange we celebrate
The arbitrary and odd.

Janus at least was two-faced
He looked back and ahead.

But we seem to like it better
If we consider the old year dead.

And even the numbered year itself
Comes from a short monk’s error.

Jesus’ birth did not transpire
After Herod’s death and terror.

So what is it we celebrate
With fireworks and so much fizz?

Is it the chance to start anew,
And redefine what is?

Is it the chance to be born again,
And this time get it right?

Is it the chance to find true love
Turn darkness into light?

Is it the chance to realize
It really could be worse?

You could be homeless, jobless
Or lying in a hearse.

You could be stuck in prison
With meaningless days to fill.

You could be an abandoned teen
Looking for a thrill.

You could be a drug addict
Who’s sold his life for a hit.

You could be living in a war zone
Waiting for the end of it.

Where and when you’re born,
And to whom you did not choose,

Why should you think that trivial things
Mean that you can’t lose?

There are no lucky numbers
Or lucky years at all.

There are no astrological signs
That made you short or tall.

Chance is just the residue
Of choices good and bad?

In the right place by accident
The outcome happy or sad?

So much of life is inscrutable
You cannot figure it out.

You have to move on faith,
Even if you’re prone to doubt.

If you look at life as a tapestry
Of divine design.

We look at it from the back side
Seeking a promising sign.

There seems to be a pattern
But we see it upside down.

We can’t tell which bit’s the sky
And which bit is the ground.

As creatures of hope
We turn our faces towards the rising Son,
Trusting there is tomorrow,
Trusting he is the one.

And even if time is running out,
And nothing human’s guaranteed,
He promised he would return
And meet our every need.

He promised a new creation,
Because we can’t fix ourselves
He promised a new heaven and earth
The old ones on the shelf.

So perhaps the New Year is a time
For a reality check,
We cannot remake ourselves
Or refurbish our old wreck.

What we can do is pray
And trust the One above
Will in the course of coming days
Remake us with his love.

Jan. 1, 2015

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