SANDERS: Make 2018 one of life’s best years

Published 8:43 pm Tuesday, January 2, 2018

I expect 2018 to be one of the best years of my life. I hope and pray that 2018 is one of the best years of your life. It is great that our best year is not dependent upon our last year. We all can have great years in 2018.

What will make 2018 one of the best years of my life? The answer includes family, friends, community, work and spirituality. These are not all the important areas of life. And they are not necessarily in order of importance. Each is necessary, and each impacts the others to form a great year. I believe that success in these areas of emphasis will result in a very good 2018 for you as well.

First, let me say clearly that 2018 will be one of the very best years only if most of those connected to me have very good years. My success is intimately tied to the success of those with whom I am connected. Individual success cannot make 2018 one of my best years.

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I want my family by blood to have one of their best years. My family loves me. I love my family. I am there for them. They are there for me. If they suffer, I suffer. If they succeed, I succeed. We are bound together by mutual commitment and mutual support as well as blood.

But I have other families in addition to my family by blood. I have my New South family. We have worked together and struggled together for 30-plus years. We don’t just struggle together on political matters but in every area of life. I am there for them and they are there for me. The bonds could not be stronger if blood connected us.

I have other families: my law firm family; my SOS (Save Ourselves Movement for Justice and Democracy) family; my political family; my community family; my family of friends; etc. All my families connect one to another in one way or another. Every connection strengthens each family and strengthens me.

My community family is crucial. I cannot have one of my best years in 2018 unless my community has a good year. I have many communities including the following: my Selma community where I live; my Senate District community, which currently includes 10 Alabama counties, my Black Belt community which runs across the middle of Alabama; my racial community; my human community, which stretches across the world; my fellow strugglers for justice community; etc. I recognize that my various communities are often in conflict. The year 2018 will be one my best years if there is a reduction in conflict and an increase in unity. I really pray for unity so we all can have one of our best years.

I am a worker. Most weeks I work seven days. Too many days I work 12 to 16 hours. I work on Senate matters. I work on legal matters. I work on community matters. I work on political matters. I just work, work, work. The year 2018 must include less work: some 10 hours days instead of 12-16 hour workdays. It should include at least one complete day a week without work. I work on virtually every holiday except Thanksgiving and Christmas. Several members of my various families have advised me to work less. I am going to take their advice to some degree. I understand that sometimes less is more.

To have the best year of my life, I need the best spiritual relationships most of all. The odds against most of what I try to do are always great. I always say, “If it were easy, someone else would be doing it.” I need help beyond what I can do. I need help beyond human help.

When I am right spiritually, I am unified within myself and I am stronger. When I am right spiritually, I am unified with fellow human beings and I am stronger. When I am right spiritually, I am unified with God and I am stronger. There is unbelievable strength in unity. My strength is added when I unite with myself. My strength is multiplied when I unite with others. My strength increases geometrically when I unite with God. Unity is so powerful.

I am going to have one of my best years. There are some concrete matters involved in 2018 being one of my best years. I will serve in the Senate this Session. I will run for the Alabama Senate one last time. I will serve in the community. I will serve in the legal arena. I will serve in the political arena. I will serve with my family and friends. I want you to join me and have one of your best years. If we have one of our best years, the world will be a little bit better place to live.