Focus for the New Year

By: Edgar Mana-ay

BEFORE we can look forward to 2019 with hope and eagerness, it is but fitting to look back to 2018 and see the fulfillment of God’s promises in our lives and that’s the reason why we are so thankful and grateful. Our gratitude to God will make sense of our past, will bring peace in our hearts today and will create a vision for tomorrow.

For those amongst us who feels that they weren’t so blessed in 2018 and therefore not so thankful, try to go back to memory lane and you will see how you have survived the trials and hardships of life because of God’s grace and intervention. The fact that we are coming into the New Year alive and kicking is a testament that somebody up there has helped us make it thru 2018. So today be thankful and think how rich you are. Your family is priceless, your time is gold and your health is wealth.

We have taken for granted many of God’s blessings that it is in sickness that we value health, in separation that we yearn for our family and in financial hardships that we realize that money is just an instrument and not the end goal. A sign of thankfulness is that even if you have so few, yet you still share it with others who has fewer than your few or have nothing at all. That is fulfilling 1Cor. 9:8; “And God is able to make grace abound to you, so that in all things and at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work”. You cannot out give God and can never claim that you were not richly blessed in 2018.

This year 2019, it is suggested that our focus should be on our family. In the midst of the hustle and bustle of life aggravated by the drug menace in our society, the more there is the need to pay more attention and not take for granted our husband, wife, children and grandparents. The family is the basic unit and foundationof the progress of the nation. Weaken or destroy the family and you weaken or destroy our nation. It is therefore fitting that this New Year we ponder upon the following message of Pope Francis on the familyto set our focus on the right direction, that is MORE ATTENTION TO OUR FAMILY.

“There is no perfect family. We do not have perfect parents. We are not perfect. We do not marry a perfect person nor have perfect children. We have complaints from each other. So there is no healthy marriage nor healthy family without the exercise of forgiveness and tolerance.

Forgiveness and tolerance is vital to our emotional health and spiritual survival. Without the two, the family becomes an arena of conflict and a stronghold of hurt. Without forgiveness and tolerance, the family becomes ill.

Forgiveness and tolerance becomes the asepsis of the soul; the cleansing of the mind and the liberation of the heart. Whoever does not forgive and tolerate does not have peace in the soul nor communion with God. Hurt is a poison that intoxicates and kills. Keeping heartaches in the heart is a self destructive gesture. It is autophagy.

Those who do not forgive and tolerate are physically, emotionally and spiritually ill.

Don’t educate your children to be rich. Educate them to be happy with what they have, so when they grow up, they will know the value of things, not the price. Parents are the children source of life. They are there to protect their sons and daughters and not to compete with them. That is why the family must be a place of life, not death; a territory of cure and not of illness; a stage of forgiveness and tolerance and not guilt. Forgiveness and tolerance brings joy, where sorrow has produced sadness; forgiveness and tolerance brings healing, where sorrow had caused disease”.


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