Thursday, January 8, 2015

Plans, Desires and Spring

We just finished an eventful 2014. There were many accidents and incidents that brought much sadness. We saw a breakdown of trust in our national systems, a minimum of concern for etiquette, and a lack of  shame, which gave rise to citizen's anger. Despite it all there was reason for hope in the visit of the pope.

A hope the new year will be better. A seminary professor who teachers Church History at the diocesan seminary, in an article in the Kyeongyang magazine, introduces us to three words which   prepare for the new year: plans, desires and spring.

Each  year we make plans and each  year we fail to carry them out. We decide to change some aspect of our lives, to do something we have never done before, and make some long range plans. As a Catholic we decide to become more involved in church life, take more interest in our spiritual life etc., but again we fail, however, the making of plans is a worthwhile exercise; we have the opportunity to look over our lives.

Failure comes because we don't reflect on who we are and make huge plans not proper to our situation. We need to have control over the plans and not be impetuous, true also in our growth in spirituality; not an area we can in a few moments of  time  hope to see renewal. Required is effort over a period of time to see results, and no need to despair when not attained with our time clock.               

We  all have dreams and desires that we want to see realized. Whether a person is religious or not is immaterial for desiring is part of our nature. These desires are varied: health, success, family peace, not achieved the past year we try again. We also have desires for the nation. However, we have to determine whether our desires are  opposed to what another person desires. Our desires can be fueling our greed. In God's providence the answer may come in a way we do not expect. If we do not get what we want no reason to hold God responsible nor despair but to remain patient and continue desiring.

When we followed the lunar calendar the New Year coincided with spring. The weather is not warm but we know that spring is close. Lunar New Year was often used interchangeably with spring. As we know from the winter solstice the days begin getting longer. The time for a take-off.

When no  hint of change is perceived it is easy to see only darkness, But the present continues to change. It is only a question of time before spring is here. This is nature's way. Our spiritual life is the same. No blossoming, we are faced with the fierce cold and recoil but with patience we know the spring will come.

The writer used these three words to urge us to see the new year in a different way. There are those who have no feeling one way or another with the advent of the new year, and those who have lost hope and with the above kind of talk greet it only with a cynical smile.

Even with this attitude, frustrated and lacking hope this planning and desiring are not useless. According to the law of nature spring will come. The new year will be different and our need to continue to hope.

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