No New Year’s Predictions

2015 Should Be Good, Unless There Is A Real Estate Meltdown

Ed, my neighbor next door, always holds a New Year’s Eve party where he makes his famous predictions for the coming year. Ed and Ruby will still be hosting their annual New Year’s Eve party this year, but Ed isn’t doing any predictions. My neighbor has decided that the world has gone totally crazy, and anything can happen in the coming year. Ed has pointed out that 2014 was as unpredictable as it gets. Ed still has some sandbags from Melville’s unbelievable summer flood. The killing of a ceremonial soldier/reservist and gunfire in the parliament at Ottawa was shocking. Then there was ISIS proudly beheading captives for the world to see so that Ed has given up making his predictions. Well almost, as Ed has made one prediction for himself; “I’m predicting that my neighbor next door will sell his house and move away. The only thing that could destroy my hopes is if there is a real estate meltdown.”

2015 has a great potential for joy for Ed, as long as, his neighbor moves away. When the beginning of the New Year rolls around, we do consider, like Ed, what might be a potential source of joy for us in the coming year. What will we do with our lives beyond our work and responsibilities in the year ahead? In a very real sense, everything is permissible for us, but not everything we might do is to our benefit. In fact, what we enjoy doing may be harmful, in that, it may master us. It is hard to eat one potato chip and stop at one. There is a thin line between enough and too much food.  

Many of us watch lots of television. We never consider that it could be harmful to us. It is interesting that the modern technology enables the streaming of American TV into Chinese homes. The Chinese government has reacted to the American programs. The Chinese State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television has told program providers they are to censor episodes. They must remove too much physical contact in programs and, murders or suicides, or kidnappings, or drug abuse, or gambling, or things supernatural in the American programs. The companies providing American TV have complained, “If we chop all this stuff out of our programs, we’ve got nothing left to show the Chinese public.” Should we watch the chopped out stuff ourselves?

It is good for Christians to remember that we belong to God in both our body and soul. How we treat each of them is important. What we do with our bodies and our souls has moral relevance. Our human body is the home or the Temple of the Holy Spirit. We can treat our human body like it is a playground to satisfy everything pleasurable that we feel like doing. The problem is that not everything we do is good for us, and might enslave us in problems. God’s words challenge us with: “Do you not know that your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” It is God’s way for you to enrich 2015.

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Raymond Maher
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