He (Ezra) had arranged to leave Babylon on April 8, the first day of the new year, and he arrived at Jerusalem on August 4,for the gracious hand of his God was on him” (Ezra 7:9)
Ezra made plans to travel on the 1st day of the New Year; and notice the date “April 8th”. January 1st is NOT the New Year for everyone in the USA and other parts of the world. New Year’s is an important celebration for many religions and countries, including ours. There are many different New Year dates and many reasons to celebrate it.
The Jewish New Year
Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year, celebrated on the 1st Day of Tishrei, the 7th month of the Hebrew calendar, and in 2009 it fell on sunset September 18th through sunset September 20th.
The Muslim New Year
Maal Hijra is the Islamic New Year; Islam has a lunar calendar with 354 days. Their New Year is celebrated on the 1st Day of Muharram and in 2009 it was on December 18th.
The Buddhist New Year
The Buddhist New Year depends on the country. Thailand, Burma, Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Laos, celebrate New Year on the first full moon in April. In Mahayana countries the New Year starts on the first full moon day in January. However, Chinese, Koreans and Vietnamese celebrate late January or early February and the Tibetans usually about one month later.
The Hindu New Year
Hindus celebrate the New Year on different dates. The Hindus of Nepal celebrate it beginning the third week of March. The Hindus of Kasmir on the second week of March. The Southern Indians States of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh and the Maharashtrians in late March or early April.
The Christian New Year
The Christian or Gregorian New Year falls on January 1st. The Gregorian Calendar is accepted in several countries across the world. Those that follow this calendar will soon celebrate the New Year.
#1 Ending with the Old
I believe that most of us like to have a sense of closure: we eliminate clothing, furniture, electronic equipment, etc.; that is damaged, old or simply not up-to-date. We also need to leave behind memories of things that were difficult and hurtful. As we end 2009, I suggest we forgive anyone that has hurt us and, forgive ourselves for our errors, sins and underachievement. Let’s make December 31st as the day we leave behind the old and begin the new.
#2 Hope of the New
Hope is the expectation of something good and better than what we currently have. As we are at the brink of the New Year, let us hope for the best in 2010. It may be a good idea to write down a few things we hope for. They may be related, but not limited, to: family, career, work, health, relationships our country and our world. I would recommend that you write them as a prayer to God, He does answer prayers!
#3 Joy of Family & Friends
Another reason to celebrate is to be in the company of family and friends. How wonderful it is to enjoy good food, mouth watering deserts, refined spirits, great tea and coffee in an atmosphere full of music and fun with our loved ones. Go ahead and celebrate the New Year! Hold hands together and welcome the New Year with a united prayer for happiness and prosperity. I wish and pray that God will give you all the good desires of your heart. Happy New 2010!
*New Living Translation