As I contemplate our move to Iowa and the beginning of 2019, a fragment of a quote has been circling through my mind. ‘Begin as you mean to go on’. New beginnings are exciting but scary. They are a time to consider how we mean to change and to grow, which is why New Year’s is so frequently used as a time to establish resolutions I suppose. New beginnings are also a time to look back on the past in preparation for the future. As we do this, we can all see places where we have fallen short. I can say this with confidence because we have all fallen short, no matter how perfect our lives might appear to those around us. As I have considered both the places where I might wish to improve and the impending change in our lives, ‘Begin as you mean to go on’ has continued to circulate and bubble in my mind. Finally, I looked it up. Lo and behold, the author is Charles Spurgeon, a famous preacher who lived during the late 1800’s and was a prolific writer of sermons, commentaries, books on prayer, devotionals, poetry, hymns, and more. Even more interesting was the full quote. “Begin as you mean to go on, and go on as you began, and let the Lord be all in all to you.”
Friends, as we begin this New Year together and as we begin this new journey together, let’s all seek to begin as we mean to go on. To pledge first and foremost to love God and to love others. Secondly, to recognize that we have all fallen short and that we will all continue to fall short, but to offer both ourselves and others the same grace offered us by Jesus Christ.
May the Lord indeed be all in all to you.