My co-worker and fellow blogger shared this article with me in which the columnist challenged people, in the new year and the new decade, to look at a few things through fresh eyes. The writer listed 52 suggestions, one for every week of the year. This week’s topic is signs of Autumn.
This post isn’t really about signs of Autumn or fall. What that phrase means to me is the time when the temperatures drop, the leaves start to turn, and football. If I had a favorite season Fall might be in the running — the cool nights at the high school football field, pumpkin patches, weather cool enough for long sleeve t-shirts but warm enough still for sandals. But I don’t really have a favorite season, per se. For each season I could come up with a list of reasons why I like it. I like them all for what they are, for what they bring. God’s design of seasons is brilliant, to allow us to experience extremes and in-betweens, and just when we get tired of the cold he gives us warmth. And when we’ve reached our limits with the heat he cools things off.
I’m often hyper-aware at how ill-content we are with the season we’re in. When it’s winter we complain it’s cold. When it’s summer we complain how hot it is. Some people start complaining about the heat the first day it hits 78 degrees and then moan and groan all summer long. (Those people annoy me, by the way.) Sure I have my occasional gripe — “Ugh, it’s sooo hot today” when temps are nearing 100, or “Man it’s freezing outside” if we’re in the single digits — but I also try to relish whatever season I’m in. If it’s hot, I take advantage of being able to wear lighter clothes, shorts and sandals, and do different activities I couldn’t do in other seasons. I roll my car windows down every chance I get because that’s something I love to do, and in winter it’s kinda hard to do (although I do it, I just jack the car’s heat on high when I do). And just about the time I’ve started to have enough heat, it starts to cool down, all in God’s perfect timing. Then Fall gradually cools us off, taking us colder and colder and into winter. In winter? I bundle up in sweaters and cute boots and gloves and scarfs and play in the snow, if we’re lucky. In between those extremes, are temperature-perfect days and cool nights, beautiful Spring blooms and vibrant hues of Fall’s red, orange and yellow foliage.
I can’t help but get from that a picture of life. There are “seasons” in life where things are hot or cold, growing or dying, beautiful or a work-in-progress, alive or dormant. They come, and they eventually go, in due time. At times we will complain about the season we’re in. We won’t like it, it may make us uncomfortable. We may wish it to hurry up and get to another season that we like better, or we may want to go back in time to a season that was more pleasant. We may wonder, “Why do I even have to change seasons, why can’t things stay just like this?” But the truth is that with changing seasons comes growth and maturity and rebirth and transformation which as difficult as some seasons can be are all pretty positive things, ya know.
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
— Ecclesiastes 3:1-8