Fresh Starts

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead.

—Philippians 3:13

Spring is a season of new beginnings. The trees are budding, the snow is melting, and the birds are returning from their winter migration. It’s a beautiful time of year. It’s a fresh start for the world around us, and it can be a fresh start for us as well.

My recent move to a new apartment feels like a fresh start. I am in a new town and a bit further from work. There are new opportunities and new people to meet. I think anyone who has moved has purged their belongings of things they no longer need or want. I am getting rid of many old clothes that I can no longer wear after my weight loss. You may also get a few new things you need for your new place. I got a new mattress and a few new pieces of furniture. This move feels like a fresh start, a new beginning. I still have my same job, that’s not changing, but there is a fresh start in my new place.

New beginnings can be from a range of contexts; entering a new year, starting a new job, moving to a new city, or beginning a new relationship. A new beginning could also be entering a new phase of life with an updated outlook or belief, like moving to a new place. The Bible offers advice and encouragement for beginning a new chapter by providing the strength and support of God. Embrace a fresh start. Second Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

Every moment is an opportunity for a fresh start. You can argue that everything that preceded this moment has created who you are and how you think. To quote Avery Brooks’ Star Trek: Deep Space Nine character Commander Benjamin Sisko, “We use past experience to help guide us….all the experiences in our lives prepared us for [this moment].” (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine “Emissary”) We still have the capacity to notice the momentum of our lives pushing us in a certain direction, be still, and choose a new response. We don’t need a life-changing event for a fresh start. As you wind down the day, see if you can view tomorrow as the beginning of the rest of your life. Embrace what is to come.

About Joe

I began my life in the South and for five years lived as a closeted teacher, but am now making a new life for myself as an oral historian in New England. I think my life will work out the way it was always meant to be. That doesn't mean there won't be ups and downs; that's all part of life. It means I just have to be patient. I feel like October 7, 2015 is my new birthday. It's a beginning filled with great hope. It's a second chance to live my life…not anyone else's. My profile picture is "David and Me," 2001 painting by artist Steve Walker. It happens to be one of my favorite modern gay art pieces. View all posts by Joe

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