Final Thoughts on 2009

This week, I’ve been thinking about how best to describe 2009. I can’t really think of a better way to wrap-up the year than the initial lines of Charles Dickens’ Tale of Two Cities.

He wrote,

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.

For many, 2009 was a year we soon will not forget – for better and for worse, mostly for worse.

We saw the economy feel the brunt of 2008’s economic collapse with high unemployment. Many, my family included, felt the brunt of job losses due to the economic struggles throughout the nation. Yet, we started the year with hope of change with a new presidential administration.

We saw our heroes take drastic falls from grace, while others became heroes for their acts of bravery.

There are so many ways that can be used to describe 2009 the best, perhaps, is this: full of ups and downs. If we each looked into our lives the last year, we will each find, I believe, moments of ups and downs. While, I think this could be true of any year, I think 2009 had a special appeal to the up and the down.

My own life amplifies that statement. In 2009, I married the love of my life and felt more secure in my calling and where God wants me to be, while also losing a lot of weight. While on the other hand, it was a year of frustrations for many reasons.

Perhaps, we should turn to Dickens again who wrote, “Reflect on your present blessings, of which every man has many; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”

As we come to the final minutes of the year – decade even – I am hopeful for the year to come. Will it bring hope or will it bring more of the same? Tomorrow, I will post some thoughts that I have for the year to come, but I pray it will be a better year, for all of us, than 2009 – a year of hope, peace, joy and love.

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