New year, new possibilities

Whether 2018 was the best year of your life or the worst, a new year can bring lots of emotions and memories.
If it was a really good year, you wonder if this year will be as good. If the year was filled with struggles and heartache, you do not want to go through it in the new year.
A new year can bring hope. Hope springs eternal.
After all we just celebrated the birth of our Savior and King. That thought alone should be a reminder to carry us into the fresh, new year. Our circumstances change. People may come and go in our lives, but God never changes. He is constant. He makes all things new, even you. May one of your goals be to keep Christ first and foremost in your life in 2019 and the coming years.
Personally, 2018 was not a banner year. It was one of struggles and trials and change. Professionally, 2018 was a decent year at the newspaper. It is always a challenge. Some months are better than others, but there is always a struggle to have enough advertisements to cover everything and to cover as much as is humanly possible without killing ourselves.
As a community newspaper, our resources are limited but I think we do a great job with the resources we do have on hand, especially employees and those in the communities who help us in one way or another. To our communities, we are grateful and we say thank you for your support, subscribing, advertising and reading. Every so often someone will come into our office and tell us they really like reading the newspaper and to keep up the good work. It’s something we savor and hold onto when we receive a complaint.
For those here who lost a loved one in 2018, we offer condolences. We go with many of you through those loses and when we lose someone we grieve as well. We miss subscribers when when we lose them.
Social media has tried to take some of our duties away, but really only adds to society’s anxiety. Social media doesn’t attend the meetings and report on government entities and they don’t cover the good stories about people in our communities. To us our newspaper is a living history and we especially like writing good stories of accomplishments, good samaritans and good changes going on around us.
When you go back and read previous newspapers, you can get a pretty good idea of the atmosphere in the community and the people. A newspaper tells the life and times of the communities they serve; a living history of sorts.
We like it when someone shares an item with us that will make a good story. We don’t always know things or hear about them so helping keep us up to date means a lot to us.
A community newspaper is like a partnership with the community. We rely on each other.
We don’t mind differing opinions and we don’t have a problem debating the issues in a friendly manner. We give you a forum to voice opinions in letters to the editor. Of course, they can’t be slanderous or libelous, but otherwise we only edit for grammar and misspelled words.
If you are one to make resolutions, don’t beat yourself up a few weeks later when you haven’t kept them. None of us is perfect. If you make goals, then remember it’s the end result that matters and life is a journey.
I’d like to challenge each of you to do a few things this new year. First, take stock of where you spend your time and the people you spend it with. Get rid of the negativity in your life. That can mean people who constantly drag you down.
Be a Christian witness. In today’s world there is much division and hate. Don’t join in with that group. Offer respect and love to the rest of the human race, regardless of whether you agree with them or not. We frequently disagree on issues in our office but we agree to disagree respectfully and move forward. It’s not about who has the last word, or even the best argument.
The season of giving may have just passed but don’t let it end there. Continue to give of yourself and help other people.
Henry Ward Beecher wrote “Every man should be born again on the first of January.”
If there are changes you need to make in life, do it; don’t keep putting it off. A new year always bring changes and challenges.
Keep your commitments and promises this year. Don’t make ones you can’t keep.
Do at least one thing that is out of your comfort zone this year. You’ll be amazed how it makes you feel. New beginnings can be valuable.
My staff and I look forward to the new year and wish you and yours the best, whether you are a supporter or a critic. We appreciate you all. Never forget to tell someone thank you. Happy New Year.

VICTORIA SIMMONS Is a columnist, author, motivational speaker, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: vsimmons54@gmail.com ©2018

About vsimmons54

Veteran journalist of 40 years. Editor, Motivational Speaker, Ordained Minister, CEO of A Light in the Darkness Ministries, Copy Editor, Copywriting, Event Planner, Lensclusive Photography, Babbling Brook Consulting and Design, event planner and author. I love to write and speak and I love Jesus. I also do copy writing and editing. Recently co-authored Vanished Towns Revisited.
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