Not the biblical fall in Eden, of course, but Autumn in all its blazing glory ~ it’s my favorite season of the year! We’ve all read loads of articles and clips extolling the glories of this season of the year and while I’d love to do that, too, this visit will go in another direction.
My mother and my husband and many others decry this season because it’s messy ~ and it is! Before all that glorious blaze of natural fireworks above our heads is done sporting its amazing colors, the fabulous leaves fall to the ground creating a colorful carpet that many of our blankets and rugs would love to emulate! We are given vibrant brightness above us and below us, in the midst of the graying skies and storms of the change of seasons. God in His provision is good to us, sending us into the dark winter with this insistent, glowing sign and reminder of Light!
It’s very possible, I realized as I began to consider this bit of writing, that part of the reason I love Fall is the very messiness that plagues other people. I admit it, I confess ~ I am not a creature of order, apart from the grace of God at work within me. I thrill to the wild dance of flaming color that kicks up when the wind gathers the leaves from wherever and scatters them to wherever. I like that those beautiful leaves run up against anything and everything as the wind leads and drives them, bringing color and pizzazz where there’s usually none! The wind, with its leaf-palette, decorates and redecorates our landscape realms in new ways every year as the flying hues are blown about in the gusts and puffs of Autumn.
For a few days, or even a few weeks, the random artwork is spread about and then, I concede, the light-show dwindles down to a sloppy, decomposing mess, but so is the way of all things in this life. The effects of sin are the same everywhere ~ death and decay, but that is winter’s story, not the tale of Fall!
Oh, I see you there, leaning on your rake, shaking your head at me saying, “Jacquie, leaves are a bunch of work!” They are! I’ve spent hours out in all weathers raking leaves. Hours that could have been, and were not as often as they should have been, a great time of communion with both the land around me and the Maker of that land and those trees.
As you’re raking those leaves and gathering them into piles, or as you’re passing along by leaves slammed up against places they wouldn’t ordinarily be or haven’t been before, let them call you to prayer for those you know who are lost ~ blown around in the winds of life, and maybe slammed up against or in to places they shouldn’t be. If the Fall strikes you as messy, let it call you into prayer ~ or maybe even action ~ for the lost. If you, like me, thrill to the wild dance of the wind and the flying leaves, let the wind of the Holy Spirit dance you into prayer ~ or maybe even action ~ for those who know only decay and mess in their lost lives.
Our God is the Father of lights and Jesus is the Light of the World. Let the whirl and mad dance of the leaves flying through the air lead your vision up to the Father of lights! He sent His only Son to be both the Light of the World for us and the very Lamb of God who laid down His life for us. Jesus came to show us the Father, then He died and rose again so that we could be restored to right relation with our Father ~ the Lord God Almighty, the Father of lights.
When you see the trees aflame with the lights of Autumn, when you see the colored carpet run rampant in places where light and color and life wouldn’t normally be, let their light carry you to the Light of Life and give thanks. Not for the mess, if that’s how Fall is for you, but for the Giver of Life and Light who shed the red blood of His life for you. Oh, let the lights of Fall carry you one step beyond and let them call you to pray for the lost and minister to them if you can. The night of Winter is soon coming forever. Let us be diligent in the strength of the Lord’s love and life working within us, to share the Light of Life with those who desperately need to know His saving love!
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. ~ James 1:17
Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” ~ John 8:12
The next day he (John the Baptist) saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
~ John 8:12
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. ~ John 3:16~17
(In loving memory of my grandmother, Marie Storey, who also loved the Fall!)