Many people pick up new habits, or intend to, in January. New Years resolutions and all that. For me, this sometimes works. Even so, as the calendar rolls over to September and the autumn is upon us it seems as good a time as any to re-commit to a practice we may have dropped. Maybe it is because after years (and years) of schooling my mind still associates the fall with picking things up and learning new things, but I still find the urge to get going strong when the season shifts and the sweaters come back out.
Autumn is a time of cool mornings, darker evenings, coffees, sweaters, and comfy clothes. It is a great time to pick up the bible and read any book in it. Maybe pick up a commentary about a book to read alongside it, something like The New Testament for Everyone by NT Wright which you can buy a single book from and enjoy stories and explanations as you read the bible.
Many will buy journals and write in the calm mornings, no sweating, just mist over the cup of coffee or tea as the Spirit flows through you and the pen onto the paper. Write about life, about questions, thoughts about God, prayers that burden you or hopes and dreams that come alive in the fall. When you are simply writing for yourself and for God there is no wrong way to do it nor wrong topic, so long as it is authentic, so long as it is what needs to get out.
Maybe you started 2021 with goals that you aren’t going to achieve, that’s ok. September is time to reevaluate, figure out what is still manageable, and get to it. You can start going for walks, saving money, checking off books of the bible, praying for neighbours, volunteering somewhere (with covid more and more on the ropes opportunities to get out and help are growing:), sign up for a class (pottery, meditation, swimming lessons???).
Lean in to the autumn, if in no other way then by appreciating the beauty of the the natural world is about to do, God’s artistry on display.