A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Having an Epiphany

Posted on: January 7, 2013

  • In: Faith
  • Comments Off on Having an Epiphany

Although the new year is a few days old, until yesterday my house looked a lot like Christmas. I like to leave my decorations up until Epiphany and play some Christmas music while I pack everything up.

Somehow the house feels plainer after we box up the ornaments, even though it looks the same as it did before December 1st.

Bulldog with the January blahs

Some of us find January a bleak time…

In the same way, many people find January a bleak time. I tend to see it as full of possibilities—and those who really know me know that I’m something of a pessimist (although I like to think of myself as a realist).

True, a new year is just a new calendar page. We don’t really shake off all the cares and concerns we had on December 31st. And yet I always wonder whether there’s a class I could take, a craft I could try, a concert or an art exhibit I could see, or even some corner of the house I could organize better. As my mother has often said, “A change is as good as a rest.” So January usually finds me poring over course calendars for school boards and recreation centres and scanning the newspaper for notices of upcoming events or volunteer needs.

We all know the three most popular changes to make: quit smoking, lose weight, and get organized. But maybe another opportunity for change is waiting for us if we pray about it and listen to God’s answer. Maybe this is the year we step out in faith:

  • by reaching out to a family member or a friend we’ve lost touch with. Is there someone you need to forgive, or whose forgiveness you need? Could you start by making a phone call or sending an e-mail or a card?
  • by dedicating some prayer, time and money to a cause we believe in. What are the issues that really touch your heart—the pro-life movement, domestic violence, homelessness, cancer research?
  • by taking on a new role at the parish level. What talents do you have to share? Could your parish use another member on the pastoral council or another lector, greeter or sacristan?
  • by finding some small way to share our faith with others. Could you share the good news through art, music or writing, for example?

I pray that we would all be open to the possibilities God has waiting for us in 2013.

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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