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Today in the Mission Yearbook

New Year’s Day


Giving God reason to smile

January 1, 2022

Photo credit: Photo by NASA via Unsplash

One of the evening psalms among today’s lectionary readings is Psalm 8, which includes some of the most wondrous words in the Bible:

3   When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
          the moon and the stars that you have established;
4   what are human beings that you are mindful of them,
          mortals that you care for them?
5   Yet you have made them a little lower than God,
          and crowned them with glory and honor.

Who are we indeed that God is mindful of us? We continue suffering during a global pandemic for which there is a proven vaccination. Time after time we catch ourselves not loving our neighbor as we love ourselves. Even as we turn the calendar on a difficult 2021, we have a hard time mustering the level of optimism that a new year generally affords us.

Yet, the psalmist tells us, we human beings occupy this exalted plot of real estate in God’s Creation. It’s not something we earned. You and I were born here, put in a place just a little lower than God. On top of that, we’re crowned by God with glory and honor. We’re subjects in God’s kin-dom, but on our heads you’ll find a crown.

This year we can resolve to treating one another and Creation in ways that are consistent with this special loft we occupy. We can try our best to see the world as others do. We might try walking alongside them. God’s still mindful of us. In 2022, we can give God something to think about that might well make God smile.

Mike Ferguson, Editor, Presbyterian News Service

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Saturday, January 1, 2022, New Year’s Day (Year C)

First Reading Ecclesiastes 3:1-13
Psalm 8
Second Reading Revelation 21:1-6a
Gospel Matthew 25:31-46

Today’s Focus: New Year’s Day

Let us join in prayer for:

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff

Denise Govindarajan, IT Associate Director, IT Application Development, Administrative Services Group (A Corp)
Denise Gray, Accountant, General Ledger Office, Administrative Services Group (A Corp)

Let us pray

Lord, thank you for new mercies and a new year. Forgive us when we fail to join you where you are working because we cannot see as you see. Strengthen our faith as your people and your church. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.