The call of God and new beginnings
September is all about new beginnings. The children return to school in a new class, or a different school, young adults prepare for University, or their ‘gap’ year and we say farewell to the last vestiges of summer and prepare for autumn.
In September, the church also celebrates new beginnings. On the 21st we remember Saint Matthew, one of the gospel writers. He had to start afresh when he chose to follow Christ. He became one of his apostles, a friend of Jesus, and his account of the life of Christ has encouraged many more to do the same.
In a more ‘heavenly’ frame of mind, we also celebrate the feast of St. Michael and all Angels on 29th. This ‘Archangel’ (whose name poses the rhetorical question “who is like God?”) was regarded in the Old Testament as the protector of Israel. In the New testament, he sweeps the evil (Satan) out of the presence of God (heaven), making it fresh and pure once more.
I am a great believer that God invites us all to make new beginnings.
Sometimes to follow Him in a more dedicated way, like Saint Matthew of old, relinquishing some of our old ways and treading a clearer path with God as our friend. Sometimes we are even asked to fight for His causes like Saint Michael, perhaps sweeping away the evil that pervades our lives and others. And sometimes to become one of his helpers within our church and community, ministering to others in the way God calls us to serve, wherever that might be.
I’ll be writing more about new beginnings in the coming months but for now, in this forthcoming season of Michaelmas, remembering St. Matthew, please pray for all those, young and old, who are making fresh starts in their lives. But don’t forget to pray for yourselves too, as September is about new beginnings, it may mean a new beginning for you as well.Yours in Christ
Revd. Chris Wingfield