Onward and Upward

Bernice Butler

Recently I received an email that said “Good Riddance 2017,” which ruffled me because it would discount the necessary and rewarding living, learning, loving and growing achieved this past year. Moving forward requires us to make the most of all we’ve experienced, the good, bad, and even the ugly.

I would name the beginning of a new year “The most wonderful time of the year.” We get to start anew in an annual do-over—with better knowledge and know-how this time around. This quote by Patrick Henry has stuck with me since memorizing it in sixth grade: “I know of no way of judging the future but by the past.”

A similar sentiment is alluded to many times in my favorite read, the Bible; as the Israelites question God’s care during hard times He tells them “remember” what I have done for you in the past.

Every year I flip through the prior year’s gratitude journal as I begin a new one.  It’s a delightful reminder of answered prayers and blessings. Focusing on sweetness leaves no room for sour regrets now past and gone.

I’ve discovered some sure kick-starts to fresh, hopeful feelings companioned by gratitude that you might find work for you, too. They include: lending a helping hand to someone in need; telling the person closest to you that you love and appreciate them; and admiring the beauty in nature’s big and little wonders all around us. Plus, living our life with passionate purpose is a sure bet.

We invite you to join us this month in celebrating the magazine’s fresh, bold redesign for 2018 and beyond. It’s intended to serve you even better, from the new logo, snappy layout and larger graphics to the overall crisp look and feel aligned with the times. It represents the commitment of our high-energy publishing family to provide up-to-date content in a reader-friendly context. Our goal is to bring you a vibrant and engaging reading experience. We welcome your comments and, as always, your ideas and tips to aid us in covering the good stuff going on around town.

We are all in this together, grateful to our advertisers, contributors, business distribution points and every reader for making this magazine possible. Your support and inspiration are helping us all along our paths to healthy and sustainable living that honors our Creator’s intention that all forms of life work together in one big interdependent, mutually satisfying, harmonious, synergistic and reciprocal relationship.

A better world is possible in 2018 and beyond, and I understand that the changes I desire must start within me, by doing and feeling good, living simply and laughing in the face of the often absurd challenges we are called upon to overcome. May we be open to the adventure.


Bernice Butler, Publisher


Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Spiritual Foundation

I love our annual December theme of Uplifting Humanity because it gives a nod to the real reason for the Christmas season.

Transformational Gratitude

Circumstances provided me an opportunity to start my Thanksgiving season early and in earnest.

Wake-up Call

Having just witnessed a pair of devastating hurricanes hit our country while tracking others in the Atlantic, I am convinced that something is brewing in the atmosphere of world thought we need to pay attention to.

Letter from Publisher

Fall brings intense morning traffic as we navigate school zones and buses and parents shuttling kids, plus concern for my coastal friends and family during the height of hurricane season.

Letter from Publisher

Most of us have been affected by cancer one way or another, whether it’s through the experience of a loved one, coworker, acquaintance, business associate or neighbor.