Pastor Perspective

Pastor Paul Mattson

January 2020

. . in Pastor’s Perspective:

January 2020 

If you were asked to pick which month is most often associated with deep reflection, you’d probably choose January. Known for recaps and resolutions, for many of us the new year starts in reflection, as we celebrate successes and yes, bemoan, some past regrets. Then, it moves forward with hopes for the year ahead! 

So, in January, we’re all a little bit like its namesake: Janus, the Roman deity the month is named after. 

So, who was Janus? 

In ancient Roman culture, Janus was a god of doorways, beginnings, and the rising and setting of the sun. His name comes from the Latin janus, meaning doorway, archway, arcade.” Fun fact: the related Latin word janua, meaning “door, doorway, entrance,” ultimately gives us the word “janitor,” which originally referred to a door attendant or porter before evolving to its more familiar sense of “custodian.” 

There were many gateways in Rome where ceremonial entrances and exits were made, especially for the departure of the army on an expedition. As the god of transitions, Janus is often depicted with two, bearded heads that face in opposite directions, looking to both the future and the past. 

As we begin the year 2020, may we all be blessed with 20/20 vision. Looking back to see clear-ly the many blessings and the faithfulness of God’s provision and care. And looking forward to see clearly the promises of God yet to be fulfilled, and looking into the future that God is pre-paring for us. 

Our God, the one true God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit—is the true God of doorways and new beginnings. Jesus tells us he is “the gate” for the sheep, and that he is “the way, the truth, and the life.” And through Jesus, God offers us new beginnings every day, through the forgiveness of our sins. And it is the Holy Spirit that helps us have vision to see the hand of God at work in us and through us and among us in the world today. 

So let us enter the year 2020, prayerfully, hopefully, joyfully; with the hope that God will bless us with clear “2020 vision” for the mission and ministries of Christ at Immanuel. 

Blessed New Year—Pastor Paul

Immanuel’s Vision Statement 

A vibrant and diverse community of faith where lives are changed;
Where people of all ages are invited and challenged
To become disciples of Jesus in their daily lives;
Where real people experience healing, help, hope and harmony

Please contact the church office if you, or someone you know from Immanuel, with their permission, is in the hospital. Due to confidentiality laws, the hospital does NOT contact the church (or pastor) when they are admitted, even if they designate a specific church/pastor on the intake form. At Immanuel, we hope and strive to provide timely and appropriate pastoral care to those who would desire and appreciate it. Too often, we are last to know about a member being (or having been) in the hospital. Thank you!