Posts Tagged ‘new beginnings’

Day one of our brand-new beginning

August 11, 2019
This verse brings to mind a special celebration of my ordination and the birthday of my grandson on August 11

As a wave intensely hot days ushered us into August, the eighth month of the year, the term “new beginnings” came to mind since the number 8, symbolizes a fresh start. E.W. Bullinger, in his celebrated work, Numbers in Scripture, comments:

. . . Eight denotes resurrection or new beginning or regeneration or commencement.  The eighth is a new first. It is the number that has to do with the Lord, who rose on the eighth day or new first day.  In Hebrew, the number eight is derived from an expression that means “to make fat,” “cover with fat,” “to super-abound.” As a participle, it means “one who abounds in strength,” etc. As a noun, it is “superabundant fertility,” “oil,” etc. So that as a numeral, it is the superabundant number. As seven was so called because the seventh day was the day of completion and rest, so eight, as the eighth day, was over and above this perfect completion, and was indeed the first of a new series, as well as being the eighth. Thus, it already represents two numbers in one: the first and eighth.

In thinking about August, I realize some people also identify it as “What Will be Your Legacy Month.” The website of holidays, Gone-ta-pott.com, offers this definition and elaborates upon the month-long celebration:

“A legacy is what someone or something is remembered for or what they have left behind that is remembered, revered or has influenced current events and the present day. . . What Will Your Legacy Be Month is a month for people to reflect on their past and present actions and vow to make positive changes that will affect generations. We have to remember the seeds, whether positive or negative, that we plant in our children’s lives. This observance is about making the right choices so our children and their children will make the right choices. Everything we do will grow and reflect our teachings. So, teach your children well.”

Benjamin Disraeli made the statement, “The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.” We are perhaps familiar with the statement, “The greatest gift you can give someone is a good example.” Similar sentiments are also expressed in Proverbs 22:1:

A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.

Paul exhorts Timothy, as a father to his son, to be an example of the believers in what Timothy says, in what he does, in the way he lives, in faith and purity.

On August 1, I was especially aware of the question asked in the designation of the eighth month, as I prepared to spend a couple of weeks with our three-year-old grandson, Kingston Edward Simkins.  One of the joys of my life is being with him as he celebrates his birthday which coincides with the anniversary of my ordination to the Christian ministry on August 11, 1974.  While reflecting on the goodness of God, my soul overflows with gratitude, as we sing songs from Veggie Tales and I teach him original scripture memory songs. He has already learned the names of the books of the Old Testament by heart before turning three, a feat which I first accomplished as an adult a few years before my ordination. To share in his love for reading and learning more about the Bible and spiritual matters is a blessing, indeed.

Anticipating events of celebration this month inspired this poetic response which I am posting today.

Day One

“Behold, I am making you new, brand new.

You will never be the same.”

Day one of a brand-new beginning arrived on August first,

As I still seek to satisfy this lifelong, unquenchable thirst

To know the will of God more fully and to serve Him

With gladness of heart, as we usher in the coming Kingdom.

This month unfolds with a question: “What will be your legacy?”

We smile and offer our response for all seasons: “We shall see.”

With outstretched necks we look up, waiting to mount up like eagles, to ascend.

Each day blossoms in beauty as a new the beginning of the end

When the Lord shall restore all the thief came to steal, kill, and destroy

When at last we dwell in God’s presence where abides fullness of joy.

We learn once more that to love is also totally to forgives

And know the more abundant life we were designed to live.

For His glory, our spirit, soul, and body the Lord has healed

When face to face what we knew in part will have been fully revealed.

Those who walk in God’s love never lose, but they are always winning.

This we know is so true from day one of a brand-new beginning.

The example that we leave for others to follow is part of our legacy, which should be of concern to everyone, not just during August but every day of our lives. The video below is a reminder to Christian believers of the importance of the legacies that they leave: “Find Us Faithful.”

New month: new beginning

August 1, 2018

The number 8 not only represents a new beginning, but it also symbolizes infinity.

On the first day of August, we awake to embrace the first day in a new month. August is the 8th month, with the number eight representing a new beginning. While considering deeply the concept of a new beginning or a fresh start, these lyrics came to mind:

Behold, I make all things new.
Behold, I make all things new.
Behold, I make all things new, brand new.
Things will never be the same.

Behold, I am making you new.
Behold, I am making you new.
Behold, I am making you new, brand new.
You will never be the same.

In reflecting upon the concept of “new beginnings,” I thought of the number 8, symbolic of such a “fresh start.” E.W. Bullinger, in his celebrated work, Numbers in Scripture, and in an Appendix to his Companion Bible, comments that eight denotes resurrection or new beginning or regeneration or commencement. The eighth is a new first. It is the number that has to do with the Lord, who rose on the eighth day or new first day. In Hebrew the number eight is derived from an expression that means “to make fat,” “cover with fat,” “to super-abound.” As a participle it means “one who abounds in strength,” etc. As a noun it is “superabundant fertility,” “oil,” etc. So that as a numeral it is the superabundant number. As seven was so called because the seventh day was the day of completion and rest, so eight, as the eighth day, was over and above this perfect completion, and was indeed the first of a new series, as well as being the eighth. Thus it already represents two numbers in one, the first and eighth.

In light of the significance of the beginning of the 8th month, here is a poetic reminder of who God is and what He does:

All Things New

Behold, I am the Lord God who makes all things new.
Trust me and you will see. You will never be the same.
As you look to me, it is no secret what I can do.

I am God–I do not lie, I am faithful and true.
Almighty, God of the impossible is my name.
Behold, I am the Lord God who makes all things new.

Some thought it was over, but I am by no means through.
I cover and restore to remove all guilt and shame.
As you look to me, it is no secret what I can do.

Never forget what I have already brought you through.
You have a divine purpose; your life is not a game.
Behold, I am the Lord God who makes all things new.

In me you overcome—I am Lord of the breakthrough
Who offers boundless promises that you can now claim.
As you look to me, it is no secret what I can do.

Trust me, obey and see what I have in store for you.
With your life you will make known my goodness and proclaim:
Behold, I am the Lord God who makes all things new.
As you look to me, it is no secret what I can do.

A familiar passage from Jeremiah 29:11-13 in the New Living Translation also came to mind:

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
12 In those days when you pray, I will listen.
13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.

Although the words of Jeremiah were specifically addressed to Israel concerning their release from Babylonian captivity after seventy years, we recognize the truth expressed in Romans 15:4:

Whatsoever things were written aforetime, were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures, might have hope.

The prophetic word from Jeremiah can certainly have personal application, in that the plans that God has for each of His children are no less grand than those He has for the Children of Israel.

As we ask God for guidance and direction, He will lead us and teach us all along the path that unfolds as a shining light that shines more and more unto the perfect day (Proverbs 4:18). Jeremiah 29:11-13 also informs us of God’s concern for our future or “final outcome”, so that we need have no fear for our future.

Damaris Carbaugh shares “I Know the Plans” (Debby’s Song) a musical reminder of Jeremiah 29:11

We rejoice and celebrate the goodness of the Lord in anticipation of the great plans He has for us as the new month unfolds.

The Number 8: A New Beginning

February 22, 2012

In eternity there are no endings, only endless new beginnings.

Today, 02-22-11 is Ash Wednesday—representing a new beginning—as we embark upon a 40-day journey leading to the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. On this day, I am ending a 5-week writing course at a local university and beginning a corresponding course of five weeks at another university in another city. This occurrence serves as a reminder of eternity where there are no endings—only endless new beginnings:

Isaiah 9:7 prophesies of the coming Messiah:

Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

Luke 1:33 makes a similar declaration:

And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

The number 8 not only represents a new beginning but it also symbolizes infinity.

In reflecting upon the concept of “new beginnings,” I thought of the number 8, symbolic of such a “fresh start.” E.W. Bullinger, in his celebrated work, Numbers in Scripture, and in an Appendix to his Companion Bible, makes the following statement regarding this number:

Eight—Denotes resurrection or new beginning or regeneration or commencement.  The eighth is a new first. It is the number that has to do with the Lord, who rose on the eighth day or new first day. By the Gematria Jesus is 888. It or its multiple is seen in all that has to do with the Lord’s names, the Lord’s people, the Lord’s work. In Hebrew the number eight is Sh’moneh, from the root Shah’meyn, “to make fat,” “cover with fat,” “to super-abound.” As a participle it means “one who abounds in strength,” etc. As a noun it is “superabundant fertility,” “oil,” etc. So that as a numeral it is the superabundant number. As seven was so called because the seventh day was the day of completion and rest, so eight, as the eighth day, was over and above this perfect completion, and was indeed the first of a new series, as well as being the eighth. Thus it already represents two numbers in one, the first and eighth.

I also happened to think of two poems that I wrote containing this phrase “new beginning” or some variation. The first was written following my custom of writing a poem to commemorate my birthday, in this case my 64th birthday—8 squared or 8 to the second power is 64, as I make reference to:

In celebration of my 64th birthday

    June 17, 2006

 

Another Milestone

 

You also, as living stones, are being built up

 a spiritual house, a holy priesthood,

 to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable

to God through Jesus Christ.

I Peter 2:5

 

Another milestone: sixty-four triumphant years

Along this glorious, though at times, tedious journey

Toward the light in darkness until the day star appears

When I fully embrace this new identity

Merged in crescendo, unfolding to symbolize

Endless new beginnings: eight multiplied by eight.

Ever pressing toward the mark, for the highest prize,

In the service of the Master, I watch and wait

And continue to strive toward the highest degree.

As a beloved bondslave and friend of the Lord

Set apart, made whole in spirit, soul and body

And consumed with a passion for God and His Word,

Thus I transcend yet another rite of passage:

A living stone transformed to become the message.

The second poem was written during a period when our church was examining the theme of the rebuilding of the wall and the gates at Jerusalem during the time of Nehemiah, as a Apostle Eric Warren, offered a series of teachings which inspired a collection of poems, one written for each of the gates, one of which contains the phrase “new beginnings.”

Each sunrise holds promise of a “new beginning.”

With My Face to the Rising Sun: Yet Another Gate

On the east side, toward the rising of the sun,

those of the standard of the forces with Judah

shall camp according to their armies;

and Nahshon the son of Amminadab shall be

the leader of the children of Judah.

Numbers 2:3

Night gives way to a new day dawning before my eyes:

With my face to the rising sun, here I watch and wait.

With outstretched neck, straining to see the daystar arise,

I man my station, my position at the East Gate.

Though the enemy seeks to hinder, I still advance

And rise to stand under God’s standard, a new ensign.

Having waged great warfare through each adverse circumstance,

I reach this place, not by chance but by divine design.

Each sunrise yields golden moments, a new beginning

To reveal the coming glory with its eternal weight:

Prelude to the place that offers rewards for winning,

As I assess and renovate yet another gate.

I am strengthened within and refreshed to follow my quest,

Running to serve each day before the sun sets in the West.

The title brings to mind the well-known spiritual “Let Us Break Bread Together,” sung countless times as I was growing up, each time we partook of Holy Communion. This song, performed by the A Capella Choir of Arroyo High School, Elmonte, Califoronia, is, of course, apropos of the present Lenten season, leading to celebration of the Resurrection, the ultimate expression of a new beginning.