As Malaysians, our disposable income and purchasing power had just dropped tremendously when the clock struck 12 last night. Beginning today, we will feel the effect when receiving our electricity bills, buying stationery for our children, buying foodstuff at the market, sending our children to school on the bus, paying the exorbitant toll fee when travelling on the highway, and a good many more activities we usually take for granted.
But if we think about all this on a grander scale, our financial problems are far from being the largest. The past several years have been bleak years for many people in the world and 2014 does not promise to be a different year. Some people have suffered for so long, they might have even forgotten they are suffering.
I think, the best attitude with which to enter into 2014 is the prayerful attitude, not so much praying out of drastic anxiety but out of hope and faith in God, that regardless of the pain our brothers and sisters of the human race experience in the present moment, God is aware of their sufferings and is working out His plan to put all of it to end one day.
Meanwhile, let us pray. Let us pray for the people of North Korea who live under the threat of a heartless and corrupted communist regime and who have forgotten the taste of freedom. Let us pray for that elusive peace in the Middle East between Israel and Palestine. Pray for peace to descend upon Syria so that the brutal civil war will cease. Pray that governments of countries like Greece and Malaysia will stop exorbitant spending for personal gains and use adequate financial resources for the common good.
We all want a happy new year that promises all things good. But the fact remains, whether we stand at the exit of 2013 or at the entrance of 2014, that we live in a troubled world. So some of the more comfortable citizens of the world entertain the mindless partying, those who know of the predicament the world is in have to step into the new year in a posture of prayer.
Pray for the mercy of God to rule the world. I wish you God's presence and Christ's peace in this year of our Lord two thousand and fourteen.