Welcoming New Beginnings

by Seneca Moraleda-Puguan

“This is the day of new beginnings, the old is passing
Change is coming by Your Spirit.
It’s a new season of revealing
Your Word is true and You will never ever fail
Your presence will lead us.”

These lyrics from ‘New Beginnings’ by Every Nation Music were the first words we uttered after cheering Happy New Year when the clock struck 12 signaling the beginning of a new year.

As a family, we started the year 2022 lifting our hands as we sang this song, declaring that this year will be a year of new things as we let God lead us.

We ended in the prayer of gratitude for God’s goodness the past year despite everything our family has been through and retired for the night armed with faith and confidence in God’s faithfulness as we look forward to the new season we are facing.

How about you? How did you start your year? I hope you had a meaningful one.

It was just like yesterday when I wrote my first article for 2021 entitled “Glimpses of Grace, Glimmers of Hope.”

2020 was a difficult year but it turned out that 2021 was even more challenging as humanity faced waves upon waves of the pandemic and battled one variant to another, added to these other disasters and tragedies that continue to shake the nations.

As I looked at the bounty on our table during the holiday season, I couldn’t help but remember the families affected by Super Typhoon Rai (Odette) in the Southern Philippines.

Some of them were people I know. They lost their houses, livelihood and are struggling to find food and water. What a way to end the year and begin a new one. But I continue to stand by what I wrote.

In the midst of all the pain that 2021 brought, God remained good and faithful. The battle rages but hope still rises.

With Omicron spreading at an unprecedented rate, and with thousands of families trying to pick up the pieces of last year’s tragedies, I can understand that it’s hard to look beyond the present and move forward to the future.

Uncertainty is certain. Anxiety, worry and fear are real. But I choose to fight worry with worship. I choose to combat fear with faith.

We have been treading 2020 and 2021 as if we’re walking in the wilderness but I have been holding on to this verse, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4)

Indeed, He is with us. He promises to always be with us. We have nothing to fear.

Last year may have been a year of disappointments, frustrations, buried ambitions and shattered dreams, but may we be encouraged that God can overwrite, redeem, restore and turn things around. Nothing escapes Him.

He has the ability to work all things to work together for our good. He is powerful enough to make whole our hearts broken by the past years. He makes all things new.

Let us face 2022 with renewed hope, courageous faith and undeniable joy.

As we believe for greater things and expect new beginnings this year, I earnestly pray that 2022 will be a year when we can finally breathe and be free, just like the good old days.

Just like what my friend, Jose Villanueva, popularly known as “Quest” in his song ‘Good Old Days’ says,

“Take it back to the good old days
Where the sun shines and the children play
I know we can’t take the pain away
But everything’s gonna be okay.
Bring it back to the good old times
When we can be together just you and I
But right now, we brave through the night
Yes, I know we’re gonna be alright.”

Indeed, we’re going to be alright.

Cheers to new beginnings! May you and your family have a blessed, prosperous and wonderful 2022! Happy New Year!

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