Before the Ball Drops

Hank Mattimore
January 1, 2014
Reproduced with Permission

"Socrates had it wrong," says the late William Coffin, "it's not the unexamined life that is not worth living; it's the uncommitted life." Ouch! Why did I have to read that just before I was going to make my New Year's resolutions?

The word "commitment" is bandied about quite often these days. It has a nice ring to it, right? Who doesn't want to be esteemed by his friends as a person who keeps his commitments?

Ah, but we don't do very well with our commitments do we?

Hundreds of thousands of foster kids exist because their parents did not keep their commitment to raise them.

Divorce proliferates because so many husbands and wives do not keep the promises they made, "till death do us part", on their wedding day.

Ordinary folks have lost faith in the government because so many politicos have reneged on the commitment they made to serve our country first

And what about you and me? Sure glad that we sailed through the year as pure as the driven snow. Hmm! I guess not. Could it be that our Father God has good reason to us out to the proverbial woodshed? Dammit! Deep down, we know that we screwed up again.

But, as the ball drops on Time Square and we begin another year, we need to get off our knees, stand up straight and get back on the road. It's way too easy to beat ourselves up over what might have been. We need to shake the dirt from our clothes and start over.

The husband who cheated on his wife, needs to ask forgiveness and recommit himself to the person he loves. The parents who gave up on their kids and let strangers get paid to take care of them, need to understand that it is never too late to recommit their lives to the children they brought into the world.

That sense of hope is what brings us to think about New Years resolutions. As long as we are alive, we can make up for the wrong we have done or for the good we didn't do. Haven't talked to your brother in years? Get off the stick and just do it. Will it kill you to say I'm sorry?

Hope and forgiveness is in the air at New Year's. It's a time of new beginnings, start overs and recommitments to the life we want for ourselves and for all those who touch our lives.

There goes the ball. Happy New Year!