How can August appropriately be described? Oh, yes, indeed! August needs describing! We might accurately describe it as HOT. Everything (including us!) wilts in the hot August heat. It is hard to water flowers enough to keep them from withering or turning brown. And my yard? Don't ask my neighbors! As a good friend says, "Brown is a color, too!" People start looking forward to Fall's cooler days. In August, not having the benefit of air conditioning is not an option!

We might accurately describe August as FRANTIC. School starts this month--a "marker" moment! July was VBS. June was mission trips. From mid-May to July 31 were countless efforts. Summer's sports camps and special program activities are at an end (unless you are in a tournament). Football practice is in full swing. Days are obviously shorter as summer break nears its end. So, when August 1 arrives, those with children in school have only 18 days to make summer's final trips. The rush is on! The "code word" every weekend is scatter, and do it quickly!

We might accurately describe August as EXPENSIVE. School clothes! School supplies! School fees! Tuition! By August 1, it seems a huge "wallet vacuum cleaner" turns on to hasten the too rapid outward cash flow.

For me, August is a difficult month. It is difficult to "begin" anything. It is difficult to maintain any sense of continuity. The "stress and strain" are obvious. "Where did the summer go?" "I cannot believe my child is (a) starting to school; (b) is in X grade; (c) is leaving home." "I thought our problems and struggles would be better by the end of summer." "Time passes too quickly!" In many ways, August is a "marker month." It reminds us of realities we rather not consider.

Though many "August reminders of change" exist, some things are changeless. Among them are: (1) Our need to be children of the holy God; (2) Our need to make faith and faithfulness to our Lord and Savior a life priority; (3) Our need to fill our lives with God's presence so we can be His light in a dark world; (4) Our need to continue our journey to eternity; (5) Our need to hunger and thirst for righteousness; (6) Our dependence on God's mercy and forgiveness.

1 Peter 1:13-19 Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." If you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each one's work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth; knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 10 August 2003

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