"If everyone in the world demanded peace instead of another television set, then there'd be peace."
Since the start of 2014 just about a week ago, I have been thinking about what I want for this new year. I have been thinking about what my hopes, dreams, and wishes are, and how my wishes affect the world and all those who live in it.
Last week, on New Year's Eve, I took some friends of mine who were visiting Philly for the holiday to Center City to do some exploring. After dinner, we spent some time in Love Park. Much to my surprise, the park was very empty--we saw barely anyone while we were there. We could see everything without lots of people in the way.
As we were leaving the park, we noticed a large sign right in the middle of the closed-down Christmas Village. Curious as to what it was, we walked up to it. As we approached the sign, we saw that it was a wall of Christmas wishes. Visitors to the park wrote their wishes for the holidays on wooden ornaments that were then hung on nails. We spent a good amount of time reading through all of the wishes. Some of them were silly (for example, someone wished for a new mustache), but most of them were very touching. There were wishes for peace, healing, love, hope; wishes for friends, family members, and the world. Looking at these wishes made me think more about my wishes for not only myself, but for the world around me. It made me think about how I hope God will be present in my life, and the lives of others, during this upcoming year.
What are your hopes, dreams, and wishes for this new year? What do you hope for the world? For the Body of Christ?
As we begin 2014, my hope and prayer is that we, as people of God, can open our eyes to see the need of God's presence in our world. My hope and prayer is that we can open our hearts to accept the love and grace that has been given to us, and that we can share this love and grace with other people. May our wishes be ones of love, peace, justice, hope, and faith. May our wishes for the new year help us demand for more than what we want or need to live, but also what others might want or need, too.
Victoria Hoppes is the Associate for Youth & Camping Ministries for the Diocese of Pennsylvania.