My father-in-law is 100% Scottish. That’s
right- 100%. None of this one-half, one-quarter, one-eighth business doe him!
Both his mother and father were born in Scotland and immigrated to this country.
Because of that, I have learned a great deal about Scottish customs over the 33+
years I’ve been around her family! One of the most interesting of those customs
is Hogmanay- a Scottish word for the last day of the year. It’s synonymous with
the celebration of the New Year and the start of a celebration that lasts
through the night until New Year’s morning.
The singing of “Auld Lang Syne” began
as a Hogmanay custom. “Auld Lang Syne” is actually a traditional poem
reinterpreted by Scottish poet Robert “Bobby” Burns and later set to music. But
the centerpiece of Hogmanay is first-footing- a tradition regarding the first
person to cross the threshold of a home on New Year’s Day. The first-footer often
brings gifts, including a coin, bread, salt, or coal, which respectively
represent financial prosperity, food, flavor and warmth. To be the “first-footer”,
one must not have been in the house at the stroke of midnight (going out of the
house after midnight and then coming back in isn’t considered first-footing). Traditionally,
the first-foot is done by a tall, dark-haired male. They are seen as a bringer
of good fortune for the coming year.
We are always seeking good fortune in the
coming year…aren’t we? We always want THIS year to be better than LAST year, no
matter how good (or bad) last year was. So how do we do that? How do we bring
good fortune into our homes in the New Year? By practicing first-footing, or
course. HOWEVER, I would argue that we need to practice it in a very specific
manner. We want to invite the tall, dark-haired male into our home on New Year’s
Day, to be sure…but I think the tall, dark-haired male we want to invite in is…Jesus
Christ! Think about- start the year off right. Make a conscious effort to
invite Jesus Christ into your home right off the bat…and make sure to continue
to make Him feel welcome in your home all year long. And if you DO that, Jesus
will become the Lord of your home, the Lord of your family, the Lord of your
heart. And I can tell you, based on personal experience, that my life has NEVER
been better since I did that!
This year, invite Jesus to first-foot…in
your house…in your heart. Center your family, your life, around Him. And you
will have a spirit-filled year of living for God! Thanks for stopping by- I pay you have a blessed day! Please make sure and stop by again tomorrow, and stick with Jesus!