“My fellow Americans, it has been the honor of my life to serve you. I won’t stop; in fact, I will be right there with you, as a citizen, for all my remaining days. But for now, whether you are young or whether you’re young at heart, I do have one final ask of you as your president — the same thing I asked when you took a chance on me eight years ago.
I am asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about change — but in yours.”
– President Barack Obama
The closing words from President Obama’s Farewell Address are as powerful as they are poignant. A true servant leader, he understands the power of belief and the results that come from working together.
His wisdom, his grace and his smile will be sorely missed once he leaves office.
My hope for the new year is that we all learn the joy that comes from serving those most in need, May each of you be blessed by love; the love you receive from those around you, and the love you give for the least of these among us. May your hearts be filled with grace and your souls with peace.
As I focus more on the year ahead, my heart tells me that the struggle is going to be long and hard. That doesn’t bother me. What concerns me most is that we may be too divided to work together for what is best for all of us.
The real debate, as DiCaprio stated back in 2014, is not about partisan politics. The real focus has to be about coming together to address and confront those issues affecting all of our global family. This is a moral obligation that I am not sure we are capable of meeting.
This is Advent, the season of preparation. The shops are full of gifts that we might give or receive. Streets are decorated and choirs begin the rounds of community centres and retirement homes with their seasonal offerings of carols. As we prepare, we remember another, John the Baptist, who came to prepare the Jewish people for the arrival of Jesus. John, who would prepare a way through a call to repentance, so that hearts and souls would be ready to receive the One who was to come.
Father God, prepare our hearts not only for the celebration to come, but also for sharing that Good News with friends, family and work colleagues should opportunity arise. Grant us courage and a real willingness to talk about the love that came down to earth and walked among us. Amen
This has always been true. Now, however, it is becoming more critical than ever to both understand the importance of this, and to develop these assets to their fullest. Only by working together will we be able to make this world a place safe for all our human family.
Educated and rational folks need to remember this, especially in the coming days. The United States is a wonderful and blessed country. We all know that.
But we need to always remember that “God so loved the world…” Our nation, as blessed as it is, is no closer to God’s heart than any other.
There is a real likelyhood over the next couple of years that our leaders are going to attempt to stir up in us a sense of nationalism that will be both ugly and dangerous. When that happens we need to fight against a false patriotism and national pride that promotes our dirt is better that other peoples.