Daily Worship

The end is where we start from

February 08, 2018 2
Image credit: J Cathcart

Ecclesiastes 3: 1, 5-7

1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:

5 a time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to throw away;
7 a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

‘What we call the beginning is often the end

And to make an end is to make a beginning.

The end is where we start from.’

(Little Gidding, T.S.Eliot)


Change is at the essence of life. We grow, we learn, we leave our parents, we live and work independently, some meet a partner and the cycle of life starts again. 

Although change is reflected in the seasons of the year and in the patterns of life and death around us, we often experience deep felt resistance to any personal adjustments we have to make. Such as when something we have invested in, or something that we simply love to do, is discontinued. But these things too have seasons. We must shift, move, adapt, change, transform – OUCH! 

The Teacher-Philosopher in Ecclesiastes knows this and suggests we view life more philosophically: yes, there’s a time to break down, but there will also be a time for building up, a time to keep, and a time to throw away, to weep, and to laugh and so on. For everything there is a season. Most painful perhaps are those times when a relationship comes to an end; or a group of people who have shared their lives can no longer meet or choose to cease meeting together; or a project, or ministry turns out to have run its course and we have to call time. Sometimes it may be us who take a lead on these things.

T.S.Eliot turns our attention to the possibility that in the end may lie a beginning. There is much still to do, and learn, and experience…and hope for!

‘With the drawing of this Love and the voice of this Calling

We shall not cease from exploration

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.’ 

(Little Gidding, T.S.Eliot)



You are the Alpha and Omega,

The Beginning and the End.

In all my goings out and in,

Draw me by your love

And your calling on my life,

That I may grow and learn

And see you in everything.