Year-ending, Year-beginning by Elizabeth O’Connor
New Year is a time for reflection on the year gone and the year to come:
What took place in your home relations? Your work relations? Your church relations?
What events in the larger community of city, country and world most captured your attention?
Who were the significant people in your life? What books and art instructed your mind and heart?
Did you create anything this year? Did you make any new discoveries about yourself? How were you a gift last year to a person, a community or an institution?
What was your greatest joy in this year gone? What was your greatest sorrow? What caused you the most disappointment? What caused you the most sadness?
In what areas of your life did you grow? Were these areas related to your joy or your pain?
What are your regrets? How would you do things differently, if you could live the year again? What did you learn?
Did you have a recurring dream? What theme or themes ran through your year?
Did you grow in your capacity to be a person in community–to help bear others’ burdens, to let them help bear yours? Did you have sufficient time apart with yourself?
Did you root your life more firmly in Scripture? Did you grow in your understanding of yourself? What was your most important insight? Did God seem near or far off?
How do you want to create this new year? What kind of commitment do you want to make to yourself? Your community? To the oppressed people of the world? How do such questions about commitment make you feel? Angry? Challenged? Hopeful?
Who are the people with whom you would like to deepen your relationships in the year to come? Do you have relationships that need to be healed? What can you do to heal your own heart? What can others do to assist in your healing?
Is there a special piece of inward work that you would like to accomplish? Is there a special outward work? What are the goals that seem important to you? What are your hopes? What are your fears? What are the immediate first steps that you can take toward the goals that seem important to you?
Spend time in prayer, and give thanks for all the events of the year gone, and ask that the God through whose fingers they were filtered will continue to bless them to your use. They are now the bread of your life–part of all that you have to share with others.