When we cheered the arrival of 2020 do you think anyone would have been celebrating and partying if they had known what was ahead?  Probably not. Instead of singing Auld Lang Syne we would have been shouting HALT! STOP!

Who knew we would be forced to react to an unexpected invasion? Even though corona means radiance, crown, and circle of light; those labels are not what I would affix to our unwelcomed guest. Our lives were disrupted. We suffered, lost friends, and lived in fear.  We were forced to change things we did not want to change.  Social distancing, masks, virtual work, zoom, and reinventing how to sustain relationships were all startling, chaotic changes. 

I am exiting 2020 a little dazed but It was a heck of a learning experience, wasn’t it?

Moving into 2021, a vaccine spurs hope that normalcy will reappear.  Returning to ordinary sounds really good to me.

January 1 is traditionally a time of reflection and resolution.  As I flip my calendar, my pledge for 2021 is simple –  practice peace. I resolve to reduce my fears, frustration, anger, and conflict – while helping those around me reduce theirs.  I want peace with myself, peace with others, and peace with God.  That is what I want more of this year. 

How can anyone practice peace?  A good start for me is to answer three questions: 1. Am I at peace with myself?  If not, I have to figure out why.  What is missing?  No one can give me peace, I have to carefully and diligently seek it.  2. Am I at peace with others?  I can’t allow myself to brood over mistakes, carry grudges or harbor hate. Now is a good time to seek forgiveness, encourage those around me, settle conflicts, and help others be more positive about life.  3. Am I at peace with God?  That question is my starting point. You may want to begin there as well.

We are exiting a difficult season. I hope you will join me in entering into this new year with optimism, hopefulness and peace.  May God bless us in our quest to make this year our very best.  

Bring on 2021!