A New Year means many things to different people.
A few days away from the end of 2017, each and every one of us will be thinking about goals, resolutions and targets for 2018.
Which comes naturally at this time of the year.
With the overindulging in food and drinks for Christmas, most people will be thinking about cleaning up their diets come the new year. Others will be thinking about finances, family goals and educational ones.
For one Azarel Mariner Maiai, a New Year is like picking up a paintbrush to paint a new picture. She is certain that life is a process and nobody will ever be able to predict the future.
Everyone has their own canvas and it is up to them paint the picture of their journey.
According to her, the New Year is time to get rid of the old and a time for new ideas.
A Hydrologist by profession, Azarel has learnt one thing from her journey and that is to hold onto her faith.
After all those years of being raised in the church, she said her greatest resolution for 2018 is to pursue a more intimate relationship with her savior Jesus Christ.
“I guess for me chasing after the cross would lead me to places I have never been before,” she said.
“I have lived life to the fullest and found happiness that lasted for a while.
“I know that through pursuing Christ, I am taught many things such as supporting my husband and kids, help my family but most importantly help as many people that I can.”
Being born on New Year’s Day for Azarel will always be more than a birthday.
“For me New Year resolution is a time for celebration not only to celebrate my birthday but to celebrate God’s favor and because without him, it would have been impossible to get through the year,” she said.
Azarel is from the villages of Safotu, Lefagoali’i and Fusi Safata. She is currently working for the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme.
The 33-year-old believes that everyone will have an experience of setting resolutions for the New Year.
But this is the easy part, she said.
Achieving them is quite the challenge.
It requires courage but she said that with much prayers and determination, she is optimistic that 2018 is going to be a great year.
“There is a specific reason of why it is called New Year,” she said. “It means new roads and new paths that we need to take. Always take chances because we can never expect change if we are still living our comfortable lives.”