Thanksgiving for another New Year - Pastor's pen for 10th January 2021

Greetings to you all, hoping you have had a pleasant Christmas and New Year time with safe travels and uplifting times with family and friends. We put so much emphasis on the new year, but in many ways January 1st is just another day. Will we live bigger and better than before, is it like we are shedding skin and revealing a brand new creature underneath? It's not that I'm saying you all remind me of reptiles...!

Yet our custom is to take stock and go forth with renewed optimism into another trip round the sun. As my 54th year creaks past its mid point, my observation is that at best, I change slowly. My skin sheds at mammalian pace (bit by bit) not reptilian, to push the metaphor a little further.

New year's resolutions may fail more often than not, but there is a case for beginning a new year with renewed prayer, and an honest attempt to pray blessing over those we know and love. This Sunday we will be looking briefly at the 3rd epistle of John, written to Gaius. John writes; 'I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.' It is legitimate at this time to pray for the physical, mental and spiritual well-being of those we know and love.

My prayer for you all is that you will know God's blessing and leading in 2021, that our creating, sustaining and redeeming God will bless and keep you. We all would wish that the Covid year would have magically disappeared as January 1st clicked over, but in many areas of life there are challenges still to come. Stay faithful and stay the course, as Moses exhorted the Israelites 'do not turn aside to the right or to the left.' (Deuteronomy 5:32)

Happy New Year, don't forget laughter and hospitality, they brighten the journey.

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