Please sit with me as I pour another glass of iced tea and serve my favorite scones. I know, it should be a pot of cinnamon tea in October but our temperatures continue to hover around 90. Very strange weather for this time of year.
For awhile I didn't think there would be a Sunday Afternoon Tea this week. It had been a difficult week for me already with a busy schedule and poor health colliding head on like those freight trains one sees in black and white movies. Then another chore looked like it was coming at me from another direction when Christopher needed high school transcripts by next week and we thought we had lost them on the computer when our Microsoft Office crashed earlier this year.
We did eventually find most of them but I will have to use my memory to redo one year. Note to other homeschoolers... make certain you document what you have learned each year and then back up the documentation whether it is elementary school or high school. Once again, ask me how I know. :)
Yesterday morning I was very drained and feeling overwhelmed with life right now. I was muttering and complaining to God, no different than the Children of Israel as they wandered through their own wilderness. Why did life have to be so HARD at times? Why did God allow sickness and disease to affect my body? I have tried to follow Him since my teens and you'd think things would have worked out just a little EASIER, Lord? Why do the wicked seem to have it so easy and those who love You have such trials? Sigh... questions asked for many millenia.
I told Him I needed to know I was not in some vacuum, all alone in the Universe. I needed a SIGN. I had in mind something spectacular like shooting stars in daylight but as I drove out of "town" and into the country, deciding to go the long way home, I began to notice my surroundings for the first time that day. I took my eyes off myself and my problems long enough to gaze at the fields and flowers (I'd forgotten there were autumn wild flowers), the maze color of the tall fields of feed corn now dry enough to harvest, the touches of yellow as the leaves begin to turn colors, the red tractor alone in a field awaiting a farmer to return from a break in the heat... and old fashioned tractor without air conditioning and radio for a small farm, my elderly neighbors variety of mums planted near the county road, the beauty of rural mailboxes set against the fence next to the Christmas tree farm.... overwhelming beauty, breathtaking in the simplicity of the gentle colors of early autumn.
My thoughts went to the title of a book by Francis Schaeffer, He Is There and He is Not Silent. No... He is never silent if one is willing to look in the right places. If we expect His Presence to be indicated by a lack of challenges then we will never "see" Him. However, this time of year we do not have to look very far to see His Presence. Just think of the very timing of nature that is so perfect we complain about 90 degree heat in October. How can we? Because there is a trusted and regular cycle that is Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. Why? How?
That is why a simple drive through the country was all I needed to regain my faith. Nothing drastic... No laying on of hands and having all illness leave my body. No huge check in the mailbox. Just the realization that autumn was here. The temperatures may not feel like we are fully into the next season but everything else is just as it always is this time of year. Summer will lose her grip soon and we will once again pull out our sweaters, heat the apple cider, simmer the stews and soups, make an apple crisp in the oven to warm the kitchen as well as the body... those things we are suppose to be doing this time of year.
Winter will follow and we'll have fond thoughts of "too warm" days as the sharp and bitter winds hit our face on the way to the mailbox. Yet, if we remember the changing of seasons is another sign that He is in control, we will attempt to smile as the snow stings our nose. :)
He truly is There and He is not Silent.... not really. Not if we are listening to the right language. Like tuning the radio to pick up a familiar signal... He is there.
Someday that signal will be Home and the music will flow throughout the very air we breath. For now, we have to listen closely to hear it and look with eyes that see through cloudy lenses to see it... but He is there.