“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart.” – Ecclesiastes 3:11
When speaking on the order of the general four seasons of each year, it becomes challenging for me to hide the joy I feel to meet this forthcoming Autumn season. Like snowflakes of winter, the leaves of last year, and the years before, showcase familiar colors but in different forms. The formation of colors, which cling to their veins, are so delicate, intricate, and often nudging me to have a second look. As if to say, see, God resides right here in me too! His simple irresistible grace as a reminder that all will be okay despite my doubts, despite my often unexplainable fear, despite what is before me, tomorrow, the next day, and the next.
” The world cannot be discovered by the journey of miles, no matter how long, but only by a spiritual journey, a journey of one inch, very arduous, and humbling, and joyful, by which we arrive at the ground at our own feet, and learn to be at home.” – Wendell Berry
Again, I am cheerily forced back to break down the garden, enjoy the harvest, strip interior summer florals, and display deeper tans, cream, orange, and sage tones. To prep for winter pies. To replenish spices and herbs with those grown this summer. To think of Christmas! Yes, there is no mistaking why I love this time of the year. It is truly so beautiful and lovely to me. I hope for you too.
Anticipation of this gorgeous season comes only with faith. Faith in the sense that no matter what happens, I’ll experience God’s splendor. Even if the first snowstorm comes earlier than is expected, there will still be glimpses of His beauty all around me. Signs in nature, the people I know, in the scent of apple cake I bake to share. In all of this and in more!
It is consistently impossible to learn what I already know. I know in the deep levels of my heart that God loves me. However, life’s mingled positions, and trials, present areas where I may sometimes question this love. Although not often, queries, unfortunately, still come.
The Westminster Confession of Faith reminds me that:
“Our natural understanding and the works of creation and providence so clearly show God’s goodness, wisdom, and power that human beings have no excuse for not believing in him.”
(See Romans 1.19-20, Psalm 19.1-5, 7-8).
In the Autumn time, His testimony in beautiful color provides wisdom to me. It revives my soul (Psalm 19.7). His pure commandments purify my thoughts (Psalm 19.8). His guidance is sweeter than the honey, which falls from the honeycombs of my neighbor’s beehives. When I keep them, when I adhere to them, I am rewarded (Psalm 19:11). Incertitude disappear when I am close to Him (Psalm 19:12-13).
Further illustrations of God’s multiformity in this forthcoming season are expressed in all that He is. In natural phenomenon-the changing colors of the sky, in puffy cloud shapes, the sun deviating its time to rest. In rain and snowstorms. We see this in the behavior of animals. In the dying off of plants and in the resilience of those plants that remain. In our human life and our need for shelter, warmth, and the glow of candles steadily burning, and in time for longer and deeper conversations, building on what we already know and what we long to know. In our work and our faith and sacred observations. Yes, His many illustrations abound! There’s no excuse not to see and appreciate them.
In the succeeding weeks, I sincerely hope that this blog’s approaching pages will serve to show you some of these same illustrations. Illustrations to tell out my Autumn stories as they appear, with assistance from the divine stories of God. As we stroll into this glorious month of September, may we always be aware of God’s everlasting mercy and grace. Our lives, no matter the time of the year, would be very different without them.
Be mindful, Be well!