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Viewpoint from Rev Chris Terry 31/12/10

CHRIS TERRY 1The Revd Chris Terry
Team Rector of Great Yarmouth
The New Year is always a time to take stock of our lives; to review where we have been; and to look forward to the New Year. Often we hope that the New Year will be better and that we might enjoy better health or happiness. Some people may see only further problems ahead and thus be filled with foreboding.  Nationally there is little doubt that we face a very different New Year. Opinions are naturally divided as the best course of action. Some hard decisions are inevitable and there will be pain from the cuts in our public spending. I know from my experience as an accountant that we have to live within our means as when a family realises that the mounting credit card bills have turned it from being a flexible friend into a demanding master
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Yet just as we can overdraw upon our credit card we can also overdraw on our spiritual reserves. Life today for some people is a constant round of busyness. The poet William Henry Davies asked the question ‘What is this life if full of care we have no time to stop and stare?’ Too often we neglect the time to be at one with God. Yet God’s reserves of love are inexhaustible, he never says ‘enough’, in fact quite the opposite. If we ask God for a little he will reward us with more than we can ever hope for in life. Yet what he Dove rightgives is not necessarily the things that we think that we need. Very often God will challenge us to look afresh at the lives that we lead. Perhaps we are selfish, or demanding of others, maybe we have little care for our neighbour or lack compassion for those who are in need. Sometimes as God’s love breaks into our lives we find that the reward is not to be measured in material wealth but from that deeper sense of being at one with Him who created us
So maybe the New Year is a time to stop and think afresh the priorities in our lives, to find the time to stop and stare and realise the wonderful love of God. St Paul writing in his first letter to Timothy (Chapter 6 v 6 following) reminds us ‘Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.’ In the face of economic troubles perhaps these words can remind us at the start of this New Year that it is our inner attitudes that matter most rather than any apparent wealth. It is here that we can find true happiness
A Happy New Year