September is a time of new beginnings, powerful hope, and contagious enthusiasm.
This is a special day for me and those women with whom I entered Mercy
on September 8th, fifty-nine years ago.
As I pray today, I think of each of them,
and also of the teachers and children starting a new school year.
I pray too for all of you Lavish Mercy followers
and offer this extra reflection for your encouragement
and a small personal celebration.
Being a long-ago teacher, I have always loved September. It is the sense of new beginning which accompanies these crisp, blue and golden days.
Remember the fresh batch of school supplies you got every year:
- that marble copybook which invited you to a heightened level of neatness (perhaps never achieved !)?
- that perfectly compact and complete pencil box with the little sharpener on the end, promising you clear and accurate answers?
- that un-smudged and malleable soap eraser which would redeem you from any mistake?
- and that wonderful box of fresh crayons, each standing at attention, ready to translate your genius into a rainbow of creativity ?
What a gift it is in life to be given the opportunity for a new beginning. Every one of us has grown richer in our hearts by both giving and receiving these opportunities. Every act of inclusion, forgiveness, encouragement, mentoring and graciousness we have given or received has brought a new dawn to our spirits.
We see so much violence, hatred and meanness in our world. We all mourn its ugly reappearance unrelentingly in the evening news, especially the lives lost of those who hungered for peace. But we must never allow ourselves to be poisoned or diminished by evil. Good will always overcome evil.
How wise it was of the Universal Spirit to give us both day and night. Their dance of light and dark is a daily reminder to us that with the evening comes refreshment and with the morning renewed joy. Every day, the Great Hand of Mercy reaches down into our darkness and lifts us up into the drenching light of hope. Do we ever take a moment to let ourselves be awed by that gift?
Every day is a new box of crayons! Every day, we can give and receive the chance to start fresh! How do I want to color my world differently today? What do I want to outline more clearly in my life? What gaps in my life are longing to be filled in with the rainbow of my creativity, courage and love? How will I blend the shades of peace into the world around me?
A beautiful verse from the Hebrew Scriptures puts it this way:
Let yourself bask in that promise, especially in this golden September. It will renew your hope and strength.
Poetry: September – Helen Hunt Jackson
The golden-rod is yellow; The corn is turning brown The trees in apple orchards With fruit are bending down. The gentian’s bluest fringes Are curling in the sun; In dusty pods the milkweed Its hidden silk has spun. The sedges flaunt their harvest, In every meadow nook; And asters by the brook-side Make asters in the brook. From dewy lanes at morning the grapes’ sweet odors rise; At noon the roads all flutter With yellow butterflies. By all these lovely tokens September days are here, With summer’s best of weather, And autumn’s best of cheer. But none of all this beauty Which floods the earth and air Is unto me the secret Which makes September fair. ‘T is a thing which I remember; To name it thrills me yet: One day of one September I never can forget.