Commencement, a term we don't hear often, was used by a member of the faculty at the third year graduation exercises this past week. In high school we looked forward to commencement each year. Awards were given for all different sorts of achievements, but I don't recall anyone commenting on the meaning of the term and I had not really thought about it.
To finish one course and graduate to another level is great, but a commencement is a whole new beginning. That's exciting!
In nature things don't just graduate. The wild flowers produce seeds, drop them to the ground and a wee plant sprouts. In the spirit a new life begins when the seed of God's Word finds good ground in a heart open to His love. Not just a fixed up life, but a totally new one. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
The person who existed before was crucified with Christ, buried with Him, resurrected with Him and seated with Him in the heavens. (Ephesians 2:6) Every single thing that could have grieved God and bound someone with guilt and condemnation is gone from the record as if it never happened. A new life begins.
From the moment of our spiritual birth, we have a fresh start. The Gospel is about our future. God's love and mercy is renewed to us each morning. (Lamentations 3:22,23)
It's a treat to see little creatures beginning their adventure of living in the spring although we know their lives will just follow a natural cycle. Love that at the end of each day, we can anticipate a commencement in the morning, a brand new beginning with Christ, assured of His mercy and grace for eternity.
(Photos of the barrel cactus and goslings courtesy of Janet Beavers)