By now we have been regretting the many things that we ate during the Christmas season. I think the desire is to lose weight. Nowadays, on Facebook, one would encounter many formulas, many tricks, many types of diets, but I guess the one that is most interesting has this message in Tagalog: “Sa taon 2021, iwasan ang mga bagay na nakakataba: salamin, timbangan at lumang damit.” (In the year 2021, avoid the things that make you fat: mirrors, weighing scale and old clothes). Indeed, that is a funny new way of looking at an age-old problem. If one really has to lose weight he or she must change his or her eating habits.
In discussing new ways, Jesus reprimands the followers of John and Pharisees because of their old mindset. “New wine is poured into new fresh wineskins.” Jesus reminds the followers of John and the Pharisees that God is in your midst, the kingdom of God is at hand, and yet you have not changed your old behavior?
With many of us having new year’s resolutions, the biggest reason for the resolution not coming through is simply because we too have not changed our behavior.
Whatever our new year’s resolution is, three things we remember:
- Godly Values. St. Paul said, “Do not be conformed to the world.” The ways of the world, the values of the world, are different from God’s. For the world, the greatest is the one who has many servants. For God, the greatest is the one who serves.
- Letting Go. Changing old behavior requires letting go. How many of us would rather cling to things, habits or people not any more helpful, simply because we do not know what it would be like if we let these go. May God be our only security as He after all does not change.
- Openness. There are things about us that we know that other people do not know, but there are also things about us that we do not know but other people know. Thank God for people who are brave and kind enough to tell us of our shortcomings. They are our true friends.
In every Mass, we pray our new year’s resolution will not be the same as last year, the year before last year, the year before last, last year, and last year. We remember three things: Openness, Letting Go, and Godly values.