I wonder if you, like me, are looking forward to a new start?
As I write, we are beginning to relax covid restrictions. A new era begins in some ways. Also by the time you read this you will know whether we have ‘brought it home’ in terms of the Euro Football Champions’ Cup. Winning the semi-final was already giving that ‘better footing’ to the nation’s morale. These new starts are of course quite tenuous, and don’t necessarily last for ever.
It is rather similar when I have bought new clothes. I sort of feel a new person for a while. And then I get used to them – or tomato ketchup blobs and spoils… Are you like me, in that you like the feeling of a new start? Do you, like me, wish you weren’t always having to be looking over your shoulder, wondering in case it’s about to be spoiled?
Let me stick with new clothes for a moment. I relate this to ‘habits’, which are literally ‘clothes’ or ‘coutoumes’ in the French, which we know as ‘customs’. St Paul writes to the Colossians about how they have now ‘put off old habits and put on new habits’ since becoming Christians. This is because they have become fully children of God – they are taking on the habits of their heavenly Father in whose image they were created. This ‘new nature’ which a person can attain is not skin deep. If so, they would be like wolves in sheep’s clothing (as Jesus describes the false prophets in Matthew’s gospel). Becoming a Christian is nothing short of becoming a ‘new creation’, which is not subject to a reversal of regulations, or a botching on our part. It is permanent and works from the inside of our beings out into the rest of our lives. Jesus described it as being ‘spiritually reborn’, in John’s gospel.
So, would you like to explore this? We are running Discipleship Explored and combining it with a Confirmation Course, starting in September. Confirmation is optional but is on November 15 at 7.30pm this year. Please be in touch with Kath Sugden email@example.com for more details and to register your interest: https://discipleship.explo.red/