My friends, we have arrived: we are here, in this new year.
We have crossed the boundary of time, into the next year, with all its resolutions and plans and schedules ahead of us.
Let us pause, for just this moment, before we move boldly onward.
Let us pause to hear the breathing of those around us,
to feel their presence in this room; to know their presence in our lives.
Let us pause to consider the trees, their branches stripped bare,
their elegant architecture on display.
Let us pause to feel the spirit of life and love that ties us to each other, that winds its way through our very bones and settles in our hearts.
Before we move forward, armed with resolutions that will shortly be forgotten in the day-to-day of living, let us notice what it is that remains every year, every day. What exists beyond schedules and months, beyond time. It welcomes us to life, not just at the start of the year, but every day. And let us answer... Amen.