A Resolution of Forgiveness for the New Year Elias Bejjani
Let us with love and hope share a set of righteous resolutions for this coming New Year based on repentance and forgiveness.
Let us take a solemn vow to be all through the 365 days forgiving, loving, caring, modest, and fearing Almighty God in our conduct, rhetoric and thoughts. Let us make our resolution an on going fight against the evil inside our minds, and a promise to tame all our instincts of revenge selfishness, arrogance, lust and enviousness. In a bid to fulfill our resolutions and vows we need to thoroughly understand this below Biblical verse and equip our selves with its teachings in regards to the theological concept of Spirit and human nature.
“What I say is this: let the Spirit direct your lives, and you will not satisfy the desires of the human nature. For what our human nature wants is opposed to what the Spirit wants, and what the Spirit wants is opposed to what our human nature wants. These two are enemies, and this means that you cannot do what you want to do. If the Spirit leads you, then you are not subject to the Law. What human nature does is quite plain. It shows itself in immoral, filthy, and indecent actions; in worship of idols and witchcraft. People become enemies and they fight; they become jealous, angry, and ambitious. They separate into parties and groups; they are envious, get drunk, have orgies, and do other things like these. I warn you now as I have before: those who do these things will not possess the Kingdom of God. But the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control. There is no law against such things as these. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have put to death their human nature with all its passions and desires. The Spirit has given us life; he must also control our lives. We must not be proud or irritate one another or be jealous of one another. (Galatians 05/16-26)
Definitely it is very difficult to tame the desires of the human nature, BUT if we belief in ourselves and trust in Almighty God, Our loving Father, we shall be triumphant. With a spirit of faith and self-trust, let us all welcome the New Year, with open hearts and extended hands to all others, especially to those family members, relatives, friends and acquaintances with whom we were not in good terms during the last year.
Let us on day one of this New Year close the last year’s messy page and open a new and totally blank one with full readiness for forgiveness, and a genuine willingness for recognizing our wrongdoings in a bid to come with a practical plan for repentance.
Let us all put our burdens, pains, sickness, deprivation, persecution, broken hearts, disappointments, frustrations, bereavements, injustice, abandonment, and anger in the hands of Almighty God and follow the teachings of His Gospel. God, with his gracious wisdom and abundant generosity, shall definitely see in every way possible that we all safely overcome with faith and hope all kinds of failure temptations, hardships and difficulties. Let us all trust in Him and recognize that we are all His beloved children and that He has created us in his image.
We should never ever doubt God’s deep love for each and every one of us. How could He not love us when we are His children? How could He abandon us when He has sent his only son, Jesus Christ to defeat death, give us the eternal life, suffer and be crucified so we, His children, can become purified and absolved from the original sin and be helped to walk safely the path of eternal salvation.
Let us ask Almighty God to help us live in peace and harmony with ourselves and others, lead our steps into the righteous paths, grant us the strength of endurance and hold us back from the sin of hurting or hating others.
Let us pray that in this New Year, Our Father, Almighty God, shall grant us the graces of love, meekness, humbleness, transparency, honesty and forgiveness. Maintain our hearts and minds pure, and free from grudges and selfishness. Help us to remember that vengeance is evil and forgiveness is a Godly grace. Let us pray that Almighty God shall not to allow vengeance to take control of our lives. Being faithful to God’s holy teachings, is being loving and forgiving. For when we trust in God and believe in His justice, we ought to leave Him punish those who are evil. “Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear”. (Matthew 13:43)
God’s teachings in regards to vengeance are very clear: “Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord. To the contrary, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” ( Romans 12:19-21)
This verse frees us from the burden of taking justice into our own hands. It tells us “Never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.’ God will repay those who are righteous”..
Since God is going to take up our cause and see to it that justice is done, we should lay it down, work hard not to succumb to our human destructive and evil instincts.
Let us pray that during this New Year, we don’t have to carry or suffer anger, bitterness, resentment or revenge no matter what is our burden of pain because refusal to forgive will make it impossible for us to understand and experience the forgiveness of God for us. Jesus taught his disciples to pray, by saying:” Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” (Matthew 6:12). Then commenting on that prayer, Jesus said, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15).
Saint Paul says leave it to the wrath of God. ”Then the wrath of God is defined further as God’s vengeance, “Vengeance is mine.” So wrath is connected with God’s response to something that deserves vengeance. And then it says, “I will repay.” So God’s wrath is treated as a repayment to man for something man has done. This simply means that the wrath of God is God’s settled anger toward sin expressed in the repayment of suitable vengeance on the guilty sinner. God will and shall see that justice is done on the Day of Judgment. So let us be forgiving and avoid any sort of vengeance.
With this New Year, let us pray from the depth of our hearts for all those who hate and hold grudges against us. Let us ask almighty God to cure them from these evil ailments and grant us the grace of forgiveness and the strength of faith to keep loving them. No one should forget that our live on this earth is too short, and that we must be righteous to deserve the eternal one in Heaven where there will be no pain or fights, but happiness and peace.
With the beginning of the New Year, let us all ask almighty God to shower on every one the graces of health, prosperity, peace, faith, and hope. Let us pray for peace and tranquility in all countries, especially where devastating wars, conflicts, and discrimination are going on. Happy New Year.