While the future may be looking bright, only God can bring a peace that endures every storm.
The beginning of a New Year always brings a little bit of hope. We look forward to the months ahead and believe that this year will be “different” in a good way.
However, often our dreams can fall short of reality, and we may end up in a worse state of despair and anxiety.
This is why we need to place our hope first in God, who alone is capable of giving us lasting peace.
St. John Paul II reflected on this reality during a homily on January 1, 2003.
In the face of the events that unsettle the planet, it is very clear that only God can touch the depths of the human soul; his peace alone can restore hope to humanity. We need him to turn his face towards us, to bless us, to protect us and give us his peace.
In particular, St. John Paul II urged everyone to not to be discouraged or grow anxious, but to trust in God.
My venerable Predecessor, whom I had the joy of raising to the honors of the altar, was not overcome by the temptation to discouragement. On the contrary, relying on his firm confidence in God and on the capacity of the human heart, he forcefully pointed out “truth, justice, love and freedom” as the “four pillars” on which to build a lasting peace (cf. Message for World Day of Peace, 1 January 2003, n. 3).His teaching remains timeless. Today, as then, despite the serious, repeated attacks on the peaceful, solidary harmony of peoples, peace is possible and necessary. Indeed, peace is the most precious good to ask of God and to build with every effort, by means of concrete gestures of peace on the part of every man and woman of good will (cf. ibid., n. 9).
As we begin the New Year, let us seek peace both in our hearts and in the world, asking God for that gift that only he can give.
Do we really need another New Year?