Thursday, October 27, 2011


I love the fall.

(Now I am obviously referring to the "autumn" type of fall rather than the "falling" type of fall I wrote about in my last post.)

I love the cool, crisp air.

I love the beautiful colors everywhere I look.

I love walking in fallen leaves when they are dry and crunch under my feet.

I love that it is getting dark earlier.

I love putting my mini people in hooded sweatshirts and snuggling with them to keep warm in the wind.
I love the excitement of the changing seasons.

I guess I have always viewed fall and spring as the "transitional" seasons. Creation is changing in preparation for the next stage of being. Preparing for the harsh cold of winter or the intense heat of summer. I think that is why I love these two seasons the most; I feel like my life is also in constant preparation for what is to come, in a very good way!

Sometimes there have been falls in our life where it feels a lot like death is setting in. The trees lose their leaves and go into the like-death hibernation mode and it seems that our life follows suit due to the loss of a job or other financial hardships, relationship difficulties, ministry stresses, etc.I wouldn't cite those falls to have been my favorite. But they were necessary for the growth that followed in the spring and summer and I am thankful for even the hardest of autumns.

Other times there wasn't any kind of changing season whatsoever, such as when I lived in the Marshall Islands with my family. The weather there was the same year round. The only "seasons" I ever heard mention of were the "rainy" season and the "windy" season. Whenever I tried to inquire as to when each was approximately going to come about, I pretty much gathered that if it was raining outside it was the rainy season but if it wasn't it was most likely windy so then it was the windy season... Not much of a "season" difference as far as I could tell! It makes me smile to think about it, though. I loved the warmth of the sun all year long and the warm lagoon waves on the warm coral sand any time I wanted. I miss seeing and hearing the rain move in from way out somewhere in the unending ocean and watching it move expediently toward the shore. I miss island life and would go back if the opportunity were ever to arise.

But there is certainly something special about witnessing the changing of the physical seasons. Something about Starbucks bringing back their Pumpkin Spice Lattes and Peppermint Mochas. Something about hot chocolate and marshmallows and laughter with my precious daughters. Something about the kids' faces lighting up when they see the different colors of the leaves on the trees as we're driving to church on Sunday morning. Something about the crisp freshness in the air. Something about seeing people draw closer together to stay warm.

Oddly enough, I feel like cleaning my house more in the fall than I do in the spring. So that is what I am setting out to do this fall: clean my house. And my cars. And my heart. I guess you could say I'm implementing a little "Fall Cleaning" in my life. It's gonna be good!

I guess I think about how I'll be in my house a lot more than I'll be out of it over the next several months, so I better make it look and feel and smell as inviting as I have always hoped it would. And I believe that as I clean out the dusty cobwebs from my kitchen ceilings and the caked on grime from the doorknobs and lightswitches, I will have time to listen to the Holy Spirit a little more about the cobwebs in my heart that are keeping me from loving the Lord how I ought to and spreading His Kingdom wherever I go by loving the people around me. In making my home more readily presentable, I'll be able to open my doors and share all that I have with peace and joy. In the same way, in allowing the Truth and love of Jesus to clean out my heart, I will be more readily available to open my arms and embrace my friends and loved ones with more grace and joy, welcoming them into my heart more and more and receiving the blessing of who they are on a much grander scale.

The only thing I don't like about fall, however, is that it always seems so short... I hope this fall is long enough to hold all of the love and joy and bliss and blessings and growth that my loving Daddy has in store for me and for you!

And if we have the opportunity, let's you and I grab a pumpkin spice latte together to celebrate this great time of year!

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