2013 is finally coming to an end. What a long year this must have been for you, a year of shattering tragedy, followed by uphill struggle from the depths of despair towards the light.
The year is about to turn, by the time you read this, it probably will already have turned. What will 2014 hold for you? More challenges, as for all of us. None of us knows our future. We have plans, certainly, and resolutions, probably, things we intend to give up, to do better in the future. And you, Oscar? Do you look beyond March?
There have been times in my life when some momentous and important event is in my future, sometimes pleasurable, such as a holiday. Very often, though, there have been uncertain things to look forward to. On those occasions I frequently find myself thinking, if I can just get through that, I will be alright. Sometimes, the future appears to be so dark that I cannot see further than the object of my focus. In that moment, there are no days beyond, because they are out of my imagining.
Oscar, I don’t know if you have felt like this, but I suspect that, at some point, you probably have. But take heart, dear boy. You and I have something more to hold on to, a hope that takes us out of the human condition and allows us to transcend those things that would keep us earthbound. Can I encourage you today to do a brave thing? Look beyond. Look past March, look into the mists of 2014.
I believe you are a young man of great courage, and strength of character. How much you have already achieved! We have seen you set your face, and with that gritty determination that defines you, you have pressed on, to achieve what your heart longed for.
This image is a familiar sight to you, I am sure. When you see such a picture, do you remember the strength that went into that moment, that incredible surge of power that lifted you upwards and forwards? And what is your focus? The tape, of course, but also, I believe, beyond. Do you fix you sights upon bursting through that flimsy barrier, when you will fling your arms high in triumph, your goal achieved?
I think you do. Now, Oscar, a different tape awaits you, but one which you can take, with that strength of heart that has always set you above the ordinary. Fix your eyes, then, beyond that finish line, set your sights on your future, as yet dimly seen, but which surely awaits you – that moment when once again, you will fling your arms high in victory.
“But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead, 14 I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.” Phil 3, 13-14. Amen.
With much love, dear Oscar, and anticipation for 2014,