A dreary week, a joyful week, a busy week, a long week, but nevertheless, a week in the life of 2012. And what will the year of 2013 bring about? Regardless of what I wish for or plan, 2013 will bring into existence whatever it does. So I will just sit back and think about the "soon-to-be gone 2012," the joys, the sadness, the losses and the many gifts of life. The days will come, the days will go, and each night, I will muse the swiftness of the hour.

As I try to write an intelligible article, I find myself too engrossed in this week. Our dear neighbor LaVerne has gone to his great reward -- his family struggles to make sense of yesterday, as do we all. But today, memories tinged with sadness chills my heart. The losses and the uncertainties that we all are faced with do nothing to warm my heart nor thoughts. The bare outlines of the trees that held those leaves of regal display days ago now are reminders of the stark realities of life. The air that brushes past as we hurry along the way reinforces the cold bruskness of many of our experiences. Does this sound depressing? Perhaps -- but those days always will be present, and we have managed to survive and even to survive with joy and with dignity.

I am reminded of a Christmas book I purchased several years ago. The little old woman struggled in the cold as she wended her way through the dank, dark, snowy field. She continued to hesitatingly bring sticks and cumbersome articles -- but for what purpose? The struggle for such a little old soul was too much and overcame her thin frame as she fell to the ground, cold, shivering and slowly dying.

And then, the angels came. They picked up the tiny woman and carried her to what was to have been her goal -- the crib with our Lord and Savior Jesus, the babe of Bethlehem for the world. They laid her gently close to the newborn child in the crib. Then, they laid a fire with the gift of sticks she had carried. The fire and the warmth from the love that was present banished the chill from the air. The little old woman was where she always had sought to be, though poverty and deprivation had been her lot. For now, she was home. She never would be cold, nor hungry, nor lonely again -- she was home.

And so shall we all be -- one day -- when life no longer warms our hearts and souls. For we were not meant for only this world but for what has been promised if we believe -- eternal life with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Otherwise, nothing makes much sense does it? At least not for me. And so I hope, I pray, I believe. One day, those holes in our hearts will be filled, and we all will be together in that eternal world without end, without suffering, without grief, without emptiness. And so we struggle onward each and every day for we know and believe God and his promise is real.

Ruth Moriarity is a member of the Generations Advisory Group.