As I write this at the beginning of August, my husband, Tim, has just told me it’s 145 days until Christmas! I recently went into a local craft supplies shop and a huge section was full of Christmas items, and at that time the school holidays hadn’t even begun!
In the Bible, Jesus is quoted saying Don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:34) It comes at the end of a passage all about worry when Jesus tells his disciples not to worry about life – what they are going to eat, drink or wear. He then goes on to say can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your life.
So, when Tim reminded me of Christmas coming, my first thoughts were– I’ve not got time to think about Christmas, but then I realised I had already thought about five important members of the family, as I had gifts ready to take to Malawi. Sometimes we can get ahead of ourselves, which can put us in a spin or begin a worry about what’s to be done. I do recognise that a careful bit of planning helps spread out the cost and effort of it all.
As September begins, parents and grandparents will be thinking more about children going back to school; do the uniforms fit? what about the shoes? are they going to be alright as they start school, move to a new school or change classes? For some, there may well be relief as the children have eaten them out of house and home, which is what my Mum used to tease us with.
Many children will be looking forward to going back to school, and seeing all their friends again; others will be apprehensive, and some might like the holidays to go on forever. The Autumn term is often the longest in the school year; getting back up to speed and with so much learning to be done.
When Tim spoke about Christmas, I thought hang on….. I haven’t finished the summer holidays yet! Then there are Harvest Festivals to plan for both churches, for Moorlands and for Burgh House, followed by the Light Party, All Saints Day, Remembrance for both churches, for Moorlands and for Burgh House, and Advent, before we even get to Christmas. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Christmas, but if we are not careful we can wish our life away and not enjoy the moment.
So, this September I hope we are able to enjoy some late summer warmth; to hear the children having such fun as they play together on the school field and playgrounds; to pick juicy berries on the brambles in the hedgerows and to see the swallows gathering ready for their long migration. Simple things that come around every year.
No doubt there will be things to be done to prepare for the rest of the year, but let’s take the time to smell the perfume of the late-flowering roses, and to enjoy the month for what it brings. I wish you a peaceful and blessed September.