by Roger Thomas

Life is Like a Date Book
Roger Thomas
Matthew 3:13-4:11, 17

Introduction: Life is like a date book. I have in my hands two different date books. This one is old and used. Its pages are marked. The corners are bent. More than a few pages have coffee stains. The cover is cracked and worn. This 2006 Day-Timer shows the wear and tear of lots of hard use. This one, on the other hand, is fresh and new. Only a page or two has been touched. It holds no coffee stains-yet. The cover is still stiff and clean. This 2007 Day-Timer remains unused. It won't remain that way for long.

These books are more than date books. They are an illustration of life. An old year has passed. We have filled with all kinds of activities and events. Some were important. Others just happened. The old year contains memories of good times and bad. It is marked with scars and stains of life. A new year lies before us as fresh and clean as this unused date book. It waits to record the events of life. Someday it too will be stained and bent. For now, it is new, unmarked, and overflowing with potential.

There's something special about a new calendar or date book, just like there is something special about a new year. In a sense, the New Year is artificial. It is just like any other day. The sun will rise and set. The weather will change. It is just another day. But emotionally, a new year is different. It is not just another day. It is a new day, a new beginning.

An unknown poet catches the spirit of this time of the year in the poem--New Leaf

He came to my desk, with a quivering lip
The lesson was done
Have you a new leaf for me, teacher.
I have spoiled this one

I took his leaf, all soiled and blotted
And gave him a new one, all unspotted.
Then into his stirred heart I smiled
''Do better now my child.''

I went to the throne with a trembling heart
The year was done.
Have you a new year for me, Father
I have spoiled this one.

He took my year, all soiled and blotted

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