Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sunday Afternoon Tea - The Art of Autumn

The older I get... or perhaps it is the more observant I become... I realize all of life has the potential to be called Art.  For so much of what we do each day involves creativity as we go about our tasks of cooking breakfast and baking cookies and setting the table and putting together an outfit and arranging flowers and bringing in veggies from the garden and thinking of new ways to use old stuff.

Perhaps it is living life with the Creator which has helped me think more of life itself as Art.  For you do know He is all about creating.  And if He truly lives within me then creativity... and the desire to create... must grow more each year.

And truly I don't think there is any time of the year that I think of God as an Artist as I do in October.  His Art inspires me to make something or cook something or at least snap some photos of His Work.

This past week, during an afternoon break in the rain, I put on my walking shoes and grabbed my purse and a jacket, along with the itty bitty iPod, and headed to Starbucks.  For I still had a gift card with credit that could be exchanged for something lovely and hot and autumnal.

I then drove to the park by the walking trail and slowly enjoyed that which another artist... a barista... had created.  Sitting there in the van, watching an elderly man walk his equally old dog, sipping my drink, surrounded by Beauty... I felt Peace begin to cover me from head to toe. 

Much needed peace.  Just sitting.  Just sipping.  Just gazing upon the surroundings.

Eventually I placed the ear buds from the itty bitty iPod in my ears and switched the button over to ON.  My purse was covered with a cloth grocery bag and the van locked after checking the pockets in my jacket for the keys and the cell phone and the digital camera.

For I was off on a very small adventure.  A letting out of the Tookish side but only a couple miles from home.  Curious to see what the walking trail looked like during these magical (Narnia magic) days of October.

These hours when all of life is as if one lives in an Impressionist painting with splashes of gold and burgundy and chartreuse and yellow and red and brown.

The music was tweaked until the voice of John Denver was located.  The next eight or so songs would be the soundtrack to my very small adventure.  For on this day, only John could sing the words that echoed the feelings in my heart.  How I respond to God's Art.  Every October.

There is that short amount of time that one can completely miss if not aware it exists.  Those days each year when light appears as liquid gold and the cool air awakens the senses.  When one knows God is at work, painting a canvas that comes and goes so quickly.

While walking the trail, the end of life surrounded me but not in a way to bring sadness.  Quite the opposite, for it seemed the field of flowers and grasses and grains never looked better as they shed their summer shades for autumn's glow.

I walked almost until I came to the bend in the trail that brings one close to a cornfield.  It has been quite wet so the harvest of this field has not occurred.  It is a very large field of grain, reaching all the way to Mr. & Mrs. Christopher's neighborhood.  Their kitchen window looks out on the other side of this sea of maze. 

It is truly Art, God's work in so many ways.  Beauty for the soul to become a whole foods meal for animals when the snows cover the earth.

I walked and listened to songs about the earth and nature and the mountains and how home is the best place to be.  Not hugging trees, mind you... but yet loving the forest.  Every October I am in awe of God's Art, His timing, the way He brings each season together.

I'm sure you know the colors of the leaves are there all spring and summer.  Their undergarments of brilliant color... their petticoats now for all to see as shorter days and cooler temperatures cause the green to disappear.

What an amazing and I think quite amusing Artist He is that just before the stark blacks and whites and grays of the coming season, He explodes with color.  And He creates the perfect background canvas for the trees in the muted shades of the fields and the grasses and the jewel toned flowers surrounding the walking trail.

I am hoping this week brings with it some sunshine, a chance to embrace the brief days when one feels as if they live in a fairy tale story.  Even as I simply walk down the gravel lane... past the forest... to the mailboxes.

I have been picking up some of His Art on the gravel each day.  Leaves the color of jewels.  Brought home and placed in the pages of the very large Bible.  I don't think God would mind.  His Art in His Word.

I know some people find Him most on mountains in winter and others by the ocean when the days are hot.  I understand how it would be easy to praise Him when surrounded by the wildflowers of a Texas spring. 

But here where I live, where the forest and fields of grain coexist... God shows His Art off most in October.  And I find myself blinking my eyes when walking past the forest, for certainly that could not be a Hobbit in the mist.


Rebecca said...

What a fine expression of such a soulful experience! I almost felt as though I'd taken the walk myself...

Counting the weeks until I can put my "new" knee to the trail. Meanwhile, I need to take some fresh initiative to do some intentional Art Appreciation. (I have been adoring the autumn colors as I ride passenger-side to visit my parents 3-4 times a week, but long to breathe in the air and sit in the sun, etc.)

Anonymous said...

Love this post. Makes me think of one of my favorite fall quotes: "One of the nicest things about Mother Nature is the way she blushes before disrobing."

suzanne said...

Amen and amen! I also love October, and you have written beautifully so many reasons why. Wonderful words!

Deborah Montgomery said...

Sounds like you had a lovely walk. Autumn is a beautiful time of year.

Anonymous said...

Thank-you for such a beautiful post. You create art with your words! There is something about the light the angle of the sun creates this time of year that seems to make everything glow! We in the PNW, really appreciate it because we usually have so many rainy days this season. So glad you were able to go out for a walk and enjoy it! I haven't done that yet. I tweaked a few areas in my house for Fall only yesterday! Been busy cleaning out the garden. Really appreciated yesterday's pantry post, too! Lots of good suggestions!
Hugs and Blessings,
Laura C. from WA

Nana said...

Hi Brenda;
Lovely post! You have a way with words that you put my thoughts into your words! Across our street is the most brilliant orange tree, I watch it every day. It seems to give joy and strength that are sometimes needed. Have a beautiful week end. Love and Hugs, Nana

pjadams said...

YES! Today was the same for me, though I road rather than walked. Thank you God!

Thickethouse.wordpress said...

This is so beautiful, Brenda. Your writing is able to share the sense of beauty and peace with your readers....

I would like to ask for your prayers, please, for my son. Thank you.

Vee said...

Oh I loved reading paint beautifully with words.

Anonymous said...

You are truly a poet with your beautiful way of expressing the fall colors and your lovely walk. Thank you for your "feast of words".
Blessings, Sharon D.

Cheri said...

Yes, beautiful post! The leaves are almost all down here in our neck of the Northwoods. Except for the tenacious oaks, of course.

It is hard to stay indoors on days like you describe. A walk down a wooded lane ( or a fielded lane?) is certainly hard to resist.

Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

Thank you for your beautiful words. I know what you are saying and I agree. I rejoice in this time of year. I sit out on my back deck just to revel in the beauty of the trees on our property. Beauty all around me, HIs Art.



Eve said...

Your words resonate with me. Especially in this beautiful season. Enjoy--you are blessed!

Keri said...

A beautiful post! There really is nothing as magic and glorious in nature as deciduous autumn trees...and the lower-to-the-ground foliage that usually goes along with them. And you're so right about the peace, the healing power of God being found in that setting, at this time of year.

My anxiety was threatening to overwhelm me late last week and I knew I had to do something different and "drastic" to overcome it. I headed, alone, to a huge nearby park with spectacular hiking trails through the woods. I've always been fearful of walking in the woods alone, but apparently on Saturday my fear of being overwhelmed by anxiety was greater than my fear of meeting an attacker in the woods :-/ because I took off on a trail alone. I was nervous at first, but words can't express the sense of peace and absence of fear that soon pervaded my spirit as I wandered through the golden woods alone. I was on the trail for nearly 90 minutes, and I was a completely different person when I came out at the end of the loop.

This little story was just my lengthy way of agreeing with your sentiments about autumn and God's glory in it. Praising Him for this annual gift!