Now we’re in the enchanted moment of the year a friend calls the “Back-2s.” He named it after the time of year when most stores are featuring the clothing and other paraphernalia requisite for going back to school. In my day, the required back-2s consisted of some number 2 pencils, a couple of pens, a package of crayons, a notebook, and some three-hole-punched, wide-lined notebook paper.
The bus usually did not come on the first day of school; we walked a few blocks over to the schoolhouse, and back and forth again for lunch and at the end of the day. The going-to-school procession took place whether it was raining or snowy, slushy or sunny, spring, winter, fall.
When my children were in school, sent either by mail the week before or sent home on the first day of school was a substantial shopping-list for a wide variety of items that were essential for their education. These were spelled out by brand name, size, quantity and dimension. Last year I read an article that stated that the average cost per family for sending a child back to school represents a major dint in the family budget, something on the average of $80.00 to $90.00 per child. Times have changed! (I remember being shocked when my son’s kindergarten teacher announced that there would be a spelling test at the end of the first week.)
The fall is, of course the season of the back-2s. It is not only back-2 school, but it is back to Penn State football, cooler weather, hockey, holidays, and cherished fall traditions.
But especially if it has been a while, this season of the back-2s might also represent the occasion of coming back to church. You will be welcomed by congregation– people who are friendly and who care– not to mention being welcomed back by a loving and caring Savior. Maybe it is time to come back home and find the love and refreshment and joy in the sense of belonging and participating in a community of faith.