This night holds so much emotion
joy and sorrow, excitement and despair.
Yet we give thanks for the grand and small moments
the lessons learned and the growth experienced.
Some are eager for a new start
others are filled with grief
worried that nothing will change.
Help us to look back on the year
celebrating meals shared
conversations across the table
friends made and relationships strengthened
hugs given and shared
nights marveling at the stars
and days rising with the sun.
Teach us to look ahead with hope
each day as a gift
each breath, a movement of the Spirit
each person, Christ in our midst.
This night holds so much
light and darkness
joy and grief
welcome and loss
hope and despair
dreams realized and dreams lost
and on this night and in the year to come
through it all
you hold us
ushering us into a new year
where your presence
grace and love
forgiveness and redemption
To a new year,
whatever may come
To a steadfast God,
who goes wherever we go.
Kimberly Knowle-Zeller is an ordained ELCA pastor, mother of two, and spouse of an ELCA pastor. She lives with her family in Cole Camp, MO. You can read more at her website or follow her work on Facebook.