As I write this post, the school holidays are coming to an end, the shops have now got their ‘Autumn ranges’ in and dare I say it – a nearby Garden Centre has begun to clear a space for their Christmas range – I even detected a few Christmas decorations amongst the boxes!
This time of year heralds a time of new beginnings and a time of change for many as new schools are started, students move away from home to university and graduates have hopefully stepped out in to the work place. Many people are on journeys of one kind or another.
The Bible is also full of people on the move: Abraham journeys to the promised land; generations later his descendants journey from slavery and oppression in Egypt; many generations later they journey back to the promised land after their forced exile to Babylon. Jesus himself journeys on towards the cross and after the resurrection the apostles continue to journey across the Roman empire as they proclaim the message of Jesus to the ends of the earth.
If you look back over the past year I expect many things will have changed in your own life. We’re different to the person we were this time last year, our children have grown up a little, we might have lost a loved one and even our world is so very different.
One of my favourite children’s song talks about a journey:
Step by step, on and on; we will walk with Jesus till the journeys done.
He’s the one to follow, in His footsteps we will tread;
don’t worry about tomorrow, Jesus knows the way ahead…
And many of you will be familiar with the lovely poem ‘Footprints in the sand’.
However old or young we are, we are all on a journey and the good news is that Jesus journeys alongside us. In fact he has already gone before us and we can safely place our feet in the footprints he has left for us to follow. And when the going gets too tough, he will be there to carry and support us. All we need to do is ask him.
And so I leave you with a prayer for the journey ahead:
Gracious God, day after day, year after year, you are there to hold on to us.
Day after day, year after year, help us to hold on to you, by the grace of Christ. Amen.
With my very best wishes
Revd Ros Greenhalgh, Rector of Quinton, Weston, Welford and Long Marston
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