I woke up this morning thinking this day will be like the other days...HOT. But as I went to the local market for eggs, I was blessed with a cool, saunty breeze that immediately changed my perspective of all things. You see, if I was inclined, at all, to have a bad day...those inclinations were gone. I have always been one to see the glory of God in nature (I don't want a rock crying out where my voice should be!), but sometimes the consecutive hot days or cold days (depending on the season) slowly steal my joy. Today, I was reminded in that soothing breeze that Fall is on the way. It put a spring in my step and praise in my heart for the One who gave it. I have always loved the changing of the seasons, although I have not always lived in places where the changes were as evident as they are here. While coming home from the market and listening with one ear to my MP3 player and speaking to people I passed with the other(I know...sounds funny), a song on my player spoke right to my heart...and brought about some reminiscing...
**I grew up in a small town where you could see from horizon to horizon and the sunrises and sunsets were/are breathtaking. There's a state park close by and in the summertime while I was in high school, I'd go (sometimes with a friend) to that park and climb the highest "dune" and sit as God revealed his handiwork. Awe inspiring.
**I lived in another small (slightly bigger) town. Standing in front of my house on the sidewalk and looking down the street in the Spring...you would see azalea and Crepe Myrtle trees in every yard of every color as well as huge (old) trees whose limbs were reaching across the road to each other like kids trying to play "London Bridge." A beautiful canopy of green and when Fall came...breathtaking colors.
**I have never lived where there actually is a snow-on-the-ground-for-months-at-a-time Winter, but I have visited such places. The white is so blinding your eyes water even with sunglasses on. But there is something about seeing the "branches crack and in my breath on frosted glass".
**One home we had left the ground covered in leaves every Fall! Some would hate that because it would mean one more thing to clean up and I'm sure sometimes I didn't enjoy it as I should have...but each of those leaves went through a process of change in order to "let go" of the thing that gave them life. And in that letting go...I saw a beautiful thing. A season change.
**Summer. Every where I have lived it has been HOT in the summer (OK...duh, but I mean by comparison...hot). And sometimes those summers lasted longer than I thought was "natural." But every summer had us looking for the signs of Fall, and every Fall was preparation for the Winter, and every Winter made us long for and be grateful for Spring when it came.
Seasons change and I'm always thankful when they do. So it is with life and my spiritual walk...seasons change. The parallel is a beautiful one if you'll look. For me, it is with joy and anticipation that the new season comes, but as it lingers it loses it's luster in my eyes...until the dawning of the new season. Then I am at once filled with a usually overwhelming sense of gratitude that it occurred and I noticed and was part of it. And again, filled with anticipation of the new season...until it lingers a bit too long, then I'm ready for change and find it difficult to be thankful in the daily moments.
The ups and downs are, at times, frustrating. I want to have a thankful and happy heart all the time. But for my intensely sanguine personality, it's challenging to walk the road before me even when it winds and gets bumpy. It's hard to be thankful for the bumpy roads...until it evens out again and is straight before me. Yet...It's those bumpy, winding roads where I learn the most. Learning, for example, to trust that God really does know what He's doing even when my feeble brain cannot make sense of it. Learning to trust. Period. Finding out that I'm not in control(WHAT?!) and must surrender again and again.
So, I've written all of this to show you where my heart is this day and to encourage you if you're on the bumpy, winding road. Every season changes...walk in it....trust in the One who made the seasons and tells them when to change...He knows right where you are...
The words to the aforementioned song:
Every Season by Natalie Grant
Every evening sky, an invitation to trace the patterned stars;
And early in July a celebration for freedom that is ours;
And I notice You in children's games, in those who watch them from the shade;
Every drop of sun is full of fun and wonder;
You are Summer.
And even when the trees have just surrendered to the harvest time;
Forfeiting their leaves in late September and sending us inside;
Still I notice You when change begins and I am braced for colder winds;
I will offer thanks for what has been and what's to come;
You are Autumn.
And everything in time and under heaven finally falls asleep;
Wrapped in blankets white all creation shivers underneath;
Still I notice You when branches crack and in my breath on frosted glass;
Even now in death You open doors for life to enter;
You are Winter.
And everything that's new has bravely surfaced teaching us to breathe;
What was frozen through is newly purposed turning all things green;
So it is with You and how You make me new with every season's change;
And so it will be as You are recreating me...
Summer, Autumn, Winter...Spring.