Have you ever thought about how the month of January got its name? The month of January is often most associated with new beginnings because, in the Gregorian calendar, that’s when the New Year begins. This concept came from Roman mythology. The first month of the year was named based on the Roman god Janus who was said to be the god of beginnings and transitions. New beginnings are part of everyday life, after a night’s sleep we wake up to a new day. Richelle E. Goodrich said this about new days;
“The earth provides us a brand new beginning every twenty-four hours. It is a repeated invitation to breathe in the cool morning air and start afresh; to mimic the sunrise and brighten up while reaching once more for the sky; to carry a glad song in our heart like the early birds; and, as faithfully as the morning dew, to wash off the dust from yesterday.”
What a lovely picture they paint of the opportunities for each new day. Starting a New Year it’s traditional to make New Year resolutions. What are we going to do differently this year, if anything? Usually, resolutions involve opportunities for growth and positive change.
In the Bible, there are several stories where the characters decide to take a change of direction in their lives and live life differently - a new beginning. St Paul, a woman caught in adultery, and the prodigal son are some examples of people whose lives are far away from God. Then they all have an encounter with God and have a new beginning. It’s a positive one for not only them but those around them. People’s stories inspire me and particularly those of faith who believe that there is a higher being that can help them through life and offer a new beginning.
I learned during January of the death of Davey Falcus, a pastor latterly of a church in Ashington who had a dramatic new beginning. Davey moved from a life of crime and drugs to a life walking with God. You can read his story in his book “From Gangster to God”, he has also uploaded a summary of his story or testimony on YouTube. Davey has been and will continue to be an inspiration to many because of his new beginning.
New beginnings are part of everyday life. Are there any new beginnings you have to make this year?
Diane Armstrong, St Helen’s Longhorsley
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