2013 is here. To fancy wrap the past year, I opted to rely on Yahoo’s wonderful briefing of what was buzzing around the world in 2012.
This year has seen social media become a vital part of world events. Facebook went public, but expectations did not meet reality and share prices fell. The Middle East erupted into wave of revolution fuelled by social media activists. Tunisia’s dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali was ousted after a protest organised via Facebook, leading the way to the Arab Spring uprising.
Despite this, the London Olympics went on to put up the most spectacular show and where Michael Phelps ended his Olympic career. The Queen had some fun parachuting her way into the Olympics way before Felix Baumgartner set a world record with his free fall jump from the edge of space.
In the U.S., president Barack Obama was re-elected in the country’s most expensive presidential campaign. Hurricane Sandy left a trail of devastation and over USD$20 billion of damages.
In Asia, South Korea’s PSY produced the “Gangnam Style” while North Korea produced Kim Jung Un.
So with all the downs and ups of 2012, we are here in a new year. Even if you aren’t one to write up new year’s resolutions, we all hope somewhere deep inside us that the new year will bring great opportunities, unexpected but pleasant surprises, and something that will make us want to say: Yes, this was MY year.
All too many times though to all too many people, instead of a great hopefulness and expectation for the new year they are met with the “January Blues”.
You see a bunch of blog posts teaching people how to beat the January blues and to just look at the positive side of things. Some advise eating healthy mood foods (Vitamin B everyone!), to exercise and keep health, plan a vacation, and to plain think positively! They all sound like great ideas, but in this post, maybe we could consider how we all can beat the January blues in God.
- Pray. This is what Christians always say! Sometimes, it’s like a default answer when you just don’t know what other answer could suffice. But we all know, it is the best answer. There is nothing more therapeutic and complete than asking almighty God for help. When the Almighty God is on your side, there is nothing to fear. In our most difficult times, to constantly hear that praying is the answer can be frustrating. Praying takes patience and most importantly, it takes faith.
- Faith. Have you ever realized how difficult it is to really truly believe that everything will be okay? We know it because we hear it, and many times in our lives, we’ve experienced horrible things that we were able to surpass. But no doubt, there are or will be times when to truly believe that God is watching over you is hard to believe. We might question God’s will: God, why would You let me go through something like this? Well, to have faith is not to just have a flighting hope but a deep belief of who God is. And God is a good. He is good, and all that He wills is good. As children of God, we must believe that through and through, there is God’s good will and purpose in everything.
- Learn. Never lose the opportunity to learn more about yourself. Socrates once said, “Know thyself”. It is a paramount lesson we need to learn in life. Discovering who we are is crucial in understanding our past and moving on to our future. Though we cannot possibly know the answer to all the mysteries of life, whether they are the events of the past or the uncertainty of the future, always find a chance to discover yourself. What for, you ask? To become a better person. Never stop being the best you can be.
- Goals. Being lost is a fearful thing. There are people who can’t see their future. Other people cannot even see the next day. Questioning your life and not knowing what to do with it is a great suffering. But even if the day is dark, tomorrow even bleaker, and the future something that seems to have no solution, never cease the opportunity to set goals. They can be grand and extravagant or, they can be small and frivolous. Regardless, look for the “next step”. Better yet, try to set a goal for your life not in terms of a certain “path” or “job”. Maybe it can be vague as “what kind of person do I really want to be in life?” The answer to that can be as vague as “a kind person”. But once you’ve set that kind of goal to be a “kind person”, you’ll find that you’ll want to direct your life towards being a kinder person. That is one step closer to your goal.
- Seek wisdom. There are no words as wise as the Word of God. Seek His wisdom in your prayers, in the Bible, and during sermons. Listen intently and carefully, with an open heart. Let His words come and heal you. Let His words come and raise you. Let His words teach you and open your eyes. And also, seek wisdom through your parents and trustworthy friends. Be humble. We can never be too great, too old, or too wise to have learned enough. Wisdom becomes our tool to live life well.
So there, these are just five ways we can think more positively about the new year. Of course there are more than five ways to beat bad moods and grow a fuller faith in Christ. If you’ve got any specialty of your own, share them with us won’t you?
We hope you embrace this new beginning with God. Let His words be an armor to shield you. When you charge forward in the name of the Lord, remember, Jesus is there beside you.
So have hope, faith, and love.