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August is done and September is here! As we arrive at the Labor Day weekend, we have to ask, “Where did the summer go?” If you are like me, you have no doubt heard the moans of a return to school, and perhaps a return to work after a late summer, or summer long vacation.

            In many ways, back to school represents another “New Year’s Day”.  In January, it is a time to turn the page and make goals or resolutions about how the next 365 days will be different than the last. This, I believe is a blessing from God. God gives us continuing grace and mercy, and the opportunity to start fresh is an example of this.

            So as we have arrived at this natural mile post in the rhythm of our year, it is a great time to take stock and start fresh. While we may dread the return to school, or perhaps enjoy the return of a familiar routine, we can also take advantage of the opportunity to refresh and return to a spiritual routine that may have slipped over the summer or even since our resolutions were made in January.

            What are the spiritual practices that you need to refresh, restart, and recommit to? What are practices that you may need to begin for the first time or grow and expand? For some of us, it might be reading our Bibles. For others, it might be learning to “pray without ceasing”, that is carrying on a conversation with God throughout our day. Maybe for others, it is making Sunday morning worship a first priority, or joining a Journey Group.

            Wherever you find yourself, the Back to School transition is a great opportunity to return to much more than routine. It is an opportunity to grow and strengthen your faith. So as the calendar moves forward in its’ steady advance towards New Year’s, let’s take advantage of the opportunity to return, restart, renew and recalibrate our lives so that we can finish the 2019 strong.

Pastor Evan

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