Monday, December 19, 2016


By Pastor Joan Randall

I’ve never been able to stay up until midnight to see in the New Year.  No amount of pretzels or movies or board games has ever seemed able to keep me awake.  And the New Year has always still been there when I got around to getting up in the morning to welcome it.

If you see someone quietly blowing a noisemaker at seven AM on New Year’s morning, while walking a little white dog, that will be me.

Maybe I’ll celebrate the New Year by trying something new, 
        like marmalade on my morning toast.
Maybe I’ll make resolutions, realistic ones this year…
        not “work toward world peace,”
            but living a peace with those around me, 
        not “keep our house neat and clean,” 
            but doing the best I can, day by day 
            to keep the dishes washed and the laundry done, 
            while considering those who have no shelter, 
        not “keep in touch with family and friends on a regular basis,” 
            but reaching out as I am able 
            to the people God places in my days.

Maybe I’ll just keep walking that little white dog
                     and not-so-quietly blowing my noisemaker
                     in celebration of a life
       where there can be toast and marmalade
       where I can work toward peace in my little corner of the world
       where I have shelter from the storms of life and an awareness 
       of those who have no roofs

       where I am never alone in a New Year of friends I have yet to meet 
       and a God who loves me past my knowing.

Get out your noisemakers. The New Year is coming!

Pastor Joan, Chaplain at Sunny View Retirement Community, was a beautiful shining light to residents and staff and a gift to all who knew her. She passed away last March surrounded by friends and family and her faithful dog Benji .