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Sunday, September 2, 2018

Life’s transitions


Joyce Sasse - September is the season for seeing young people make their transition away from home. They have been given roots. Now it is up to them to try their wings.

Norman Rockwell, in his “Breaking Home Ties” painting (Saturday Evening Post cover, Sept. 1954), presented the timeless moment so well.

Set in the early 30’s, father and son are seated on the running board of the family car while waiting for the train. It’s a picture-story of expectation (by the boy) and hesitation (by his dad) – with the faithful collie resting his head on the lad’s knee. She’s all too aware big changes are pending.

We can match this scene with the prayerful words of James Taylor (Everyday Psalms) to a youth leaving home.

“As you set out in the world, God go with you... When you are feeling low, may God send you a shoulder to cry on … When you are feeling good, may your laughter echo in the heavens … And may God hear the deepest yearning of your heart.”

As we offer our prayers for our young people, let’s not forget to consider our own transitions. We are constantly facing changes: in our work, in our health, with our relationships …

We cling to old hesitations as we face new stages of transition. If we hesitate too long, burdens of fear and anger can weigh heavy on our shoulders.

The world around is a vital living entity in which change is a constant. The evolving world needs each of us to participate in the unfolding.

Sometimes the changes are like strong building blocks that carry promise and hope for a new day. But there are times when we need to speak out against those transitions that lead to disruption and destruction.

Whether we be child, youth or adult, our prayer of affirmation is the same. May God always be with us. When we are feeling low and filled with despair, may God support and strengthen us. When we are filled with joy, may our delight be shared with all – even to the heavens. And may we find peace in knowing that God hears the deepest yearnings of our heart.

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