Sunday, October 20, 2019
Sunday Afternoon Tea - God's October Love
(This blog post was first published in October, 2016.)
There are those who must live close to the ocean to fill their soul. Others need a mountain view. As for me, I need trees. Lots of trees. Perhaps a cornfield here and there and a barn to pass by but mostly... trees.
This afternoon, I took a mug of hot apple cider and my Bible out to the front porch just to sit on the bench, to enjoy the seventy degree air and the view. This has not been what one would call a "good color year" for there has been too much rain and too many very warm days this Fall. But even if it isn't great color... it is good enough.
I sipped the hot apple cider and watched leaves raining all around as the occasional gusty breeze was felt in the forest. The leaves, mostly dry and brown and brittle... but watching them as they let go gracefully and fell to the ground brought to mind a lesson that perhaps we shouldn't hold on to this world too forcefully when it is our time to rain.
I was entranced by the October forest. Thankfully, before I decided to sit on the porch, I had washed the breakfast and lunch dishes and all I had to do today was to write this blog post. But it couldn't quite reach from my thoughts to the keyboard. Not yet.
I knew what I wanted to write. About how each October the changing of the leaves remind me of how much God loves us. What He has in store for us someday. For there... beneath the shade of green... He has hidden brilliant colors of burgundy and gold and chartreuse and bright red and sometimes a mixture of them all.
Each Autumn, after the heat of the Summer and before the frigid Winter winds hit the forest... He gives us the most glorious explosion of color. Even on those years such as this when it is subtle, there is a dull faded beauty to it all.
He didn't have to design the seasons this way. But He knew that when the trees become but sculptures... silhouettes of black and grey and every shade in between against the white of snow... we would remember Autumn. When Spring arrives again and life returns and flowers bloom and the trees regain their leaves... we know the color awaits.
As I sipped hot apple cider from a favorite mug and gazed at the scenery... the forest which is half as thick as it was last week... my neighbor's red barn now in sight as the trees between us have lost their leaves... the squirrels rustling around to store their food for the cold days... the scent of the forest and somewhere someone was burning leaves... I felt Him near.
How could I not trust Him in the days to come when every year... before the frosty winds blow from the North... He puts on a show for the senses. Every October He reminds us that there was color there all the time.
We just have to have a little faith, about the size of a mustard seed so He told us when walking this earth. Not a whole lot... just a little... enough. He just asks that we believe what He said and that we trust when He tells us it all works out in the end.
Right now our life may look like this year's forest, rather battered by the heat and the rain and the wind. We feel as lifeless as those brown and brittle leaves. But He is there and as we look around we will trust that there is color left and life and hope and answers to prayer.
It has been there all along. The lesson He provides each October.
Image: Ducks Unlimited: As Good as Home