Happy New Year!
Dearest Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As the old year draws to a close and the promise of a new dawn shimmers on the horizon, we gather together, not just in the warmth of the church but in the boundless embrace of God's grace. For in the tapestry of time, spun by the threads of history and the whispers of eternity, every year is a fresh canvas upon which to paint the vibrant hues of Gospel, Grace, and Goodwill – the very cornerstones of our faith.
This New Year, let us first turn our eyes to the Gospel, that everlasting flame that pierces through the darkness of uncertainty. It is the Word made flesh, the song of angels echoing in the hushed stable, the promise of redemption whispered in a mother's lullaby. It tells of a love that transcends all understanding, a sacrifice that washes away our sins, and a path to eternal life paved by the nail-scarred hands of Christ. This Gospel is the anchor of our hope, the compass that guides us through life's storms, and the unwavering source of our joy.
But the Gospel is not a solitary melody, it is a symphony played in the key of Grace. For in God's unmerited love, we find solace and forgiveness. We are not judged by our shortcomings but embraced by a love that knows no bounds. This Grace is the rain that nourishes our souls, the dew that refreshes our spirits, and the balm that soothes our weary hearts. It is the gift we cannot earn, the treasure that cannot be stolen, and the light that forever banishes darkness.
And finally, let us remember the essence of Goodwill, the fruit of the Spirit that blossoms from the fertile soil of faith. It is the hand outstretched in kindness, the heart open to compassion, and the voice that speaks words of encouragement. It is the smile that melts the frost of misunderstanding, the embrace that shelters the weary, and the act of service that whispers God's love to the world. This Goodwill is the bridge we build between ourselves and others, the echo of Christ's love in our actions, and the testimony of a faith lived out loud.
As the New Year dawns, let us carry these three blessings – Gospel, Grace, and Goodwill, gifts from Christ our Lord– close to our hearts. Let them be the guiding stars on our journey, the armor against adversity, and the seeds of hope we sow in the fertile ground of tomorrow.
May this New Year be filled with the blessings of the Almighty, the unwavering love of Christ, and the never-ending symphony of Gospel, Grace, and Goodwill.
Go forth, dear brothers and sisters, and be the light of Christ in the world.
In His grace and love,
Rev. Dr. Jamison J. Hardy