New Year's Eve Tradition and Superstition
I see many events I had no control over. Storms, fires, economic fluctuations, violence.
I want my life to be better in the future. Deep down, I want control. To be honest, there are many places I can do better, through discipline, work, and obedience. There are others that are out of my influence.
Over all events, control belongs to God the Father.
As a believer I have the presence of the Holy Spirit to guide me. (John 14:26)
He has promised to lead me into righteousness.
“And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.” Isaiah 30:21 ESV
God doesn’t miss any of the events of my life. He sees every one.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.“ Romans 8:28 ESV
He has promised that he has my best interest in mind. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 ESV
It’s our inclination to be in control. For centuries, people have devised plans to rule events. Below you’ll find a few of them.
- Most of us have experience with this one. We may not have known the supposed reason for a kiss on New Year’s Eve. It is said if you don’t get kissed at midnight, you will be unlucky in love for the following year.
- It is a tradition in some countries to wear red underwear on New Year’s Eve in hopes of being lucky in love.
- It is a Filipino superstition to scatter coins all over and around the house to assure money in the coming year. Then, on New Year’s Day, don’t spend your money.
- In China, it is tradition that all knives of the house are to be hidden for 24 hours, so that no one will be hurt and to keep family fortune undisturbed.
- Don’t enter the New Year with empty cupboards or you’ll have a year of scarcity.
- Don’t remove things from the house, such as trash or donations, between New Year’s Eve and January 2, or you’ll lose things during the coming year.
- Don’t sweep your house or you’ll sweep-away your good fortune for the next year.
- Don’t pay back loans on this holiday or you’ll spend the year paying. Keep money in your wallet for good luck with you finances.
- Eat black-eyed peas.
- In Greece, eat Vasilopita.
- In Italy, eat pork sausage over lentils.
- Southern United States eat cornbread and/or cabbage.
- Eat twelve grapes on New Year’s Eve—one for happiness in each coming month. In Spain, they must be eaten during the chiming of the twelve bells of midnight—chewed and swallowed before the ringing stops.
- In Switzerland, it’s a tradition to eat whipped cream and deliberately spill some on the floor to guarantee abundance in the New Year. The longer it stays on the floor, the better.
- The first person to cross the threshold on New Year’s Day should be a dark male, and he should bring with him symbolic pieces of coal, shortbread, salt, black bun and a bit of whisky. (You have to invite him in.)
- Open all the doors just before midnight to let the old year out and the New Year in.
- Similarly, open all the windows to let out last year’s bad luck.
- No crying or you’re looking at a year of distress.
- Fireworks and noisemakers on New Year’s Eve will scare away evil spirits.
- In Brazil, to fulfill your wishes, wear white, jump seven waves, and throw flowers into the sea.
- Don’t do laundry or someone will die in the coming year. (As in washing them out of your life.)
The Good News
These may be fun traditions, but none have the power to change the future. Only God is in charge of that. To my great relief, the Lord has promised to guide my steps. He has promised abundant life through Jesus Christ. He has promised to never leave me. The most effective thing I can do on New Year’s Eve and every day is to know God’s Son and to put my fate in his hands.
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