Have a Nice Rest

“I said, ‘Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love. Plow up the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you.’” Hosea 10:12 (NLT)

Several times I have commented on the season of fall and the leaves changing colors and falling. The past couple of days the leaves are no longer dancing, anxious to leave the trees and spiral out and away. The leaves now are falling, floating quietly, almost reluctantly, to land on the blanket of leaves covering our yard.

It is like the trees, knowing that times of frost, cold and snow are approaching and with the leaves gone, there is no covering for the branches. So, they, too, are holding fast to the remaining leaves, hesitantly letting them fall.

The ground is newly covered in a blanket. This blanket will remain and turn to mulch and nutrients for the ground. Sleep well, ground. Rest this winter absorbing all you can from the blanket of leaves now and soon the blanket of snow. Rest easy, rest well. For in the spring you will bloom with daffodils in white and yellow, hyacinths in pink and purple and irises in vibrant deep purples and burgundy.

How often do we get covered up in preparation for a new season of our lives? Do we kick off that blanket that has been positioned on us by our Creator? Do we miss opportunities of deep seasons of growth in our lives? What if we, like the ground, readily accepted a blanket falling from above? Could we remain as it were, dormant?

I think that spring is so glorious because all we have lived with is brown for a season. Except for a bit of snow, which eventually turns black around the edges, we see no brightness through the winter. Then, after being dormant, we see a shoot of green peaking out of the hard ground. Soon a crocus. Then days later the yard is blanketed with wild spring flowers, rejoicing in the spring day.

As I have watched this fall unfold before me I have been challenged to make the most of the winter months of my life. I know spring will appear, it is my prayer, though, that my spring growth will bring glory to my God.

Change your Perspective

November is coming soon. Yes, the calendar says so, but the weather is also telling me that it will soon be November. The pile of leaves on my side porch keep growing, and the blanket of new leaves on our front yard tells me this also.

Today, while walking, it was raining leaves. The backyard was filled with the fluttering of leaves raining onto the ground. The blustery wind blew leaves down our driveway leading them to a place where they could land.

I looked around, fascinated as I always am this time of year. The gazebo is framed with yellow and red leaves, the fall sun shining on it from above. I thought to take a picture and realized I have so many fall pictures already and they basically all look alike. I sighed, and common sense took over. In six months I would not be able to tell which year I took the picture since I am bound to take the same shots over and over.

After walking, I took Dale a cup of coffee while he was working in our loft area. I glanced out the window because there was a brightness coming in through our windows. I walked over to look. In front of me was beauty, and yes, I did take a picture.

I take pictures from the ground. I see the same perspective. My pictures do not convey the beauty my eye is beholding. This image is taken from our second floor. This is what we see when we take time to look while upstairs.

We live basically on one floor, the entry floor. Everything we need is on this floor. We did this so that as we grow older, we do not have to climb stairs since everything is ready on the entry level floor. The upstairs is a sit down office area, another bathroom, an extra room for guests and our toy room for the grands.

As I looked out the upstairs window today the Lord spoke to me about changing my view. Sometimes, if we venture and take the step, we can see a beauty that our God created and we miss by not looking out. The Lord’s artistry, and His hand is everywhere. We can see Him in His creation.

He just doesn’t give us things on the ground level where most of us are safe and contented. If we trust in His Word, His promptings, and through answered prayers we can have a mustard seed sized faith and step up to see a whole new aspect of what God would like to do in us, through us, or in spite of us.

Today, I am glad the sun burst through the trees to beckon me to the window. I am glad the Son gave me a new perspective and a challenge to take a step forward.

““My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9 (NLT)

Another Fall post

The Lord has a sense of humor. I have always thought that, after all, He created me. That aside, as I walked out to drive to Bible Study this morning I remembered something about this glorious season.

Our side porch was covered in leaves. Lots of them. It is then that I remembered another side of fall ~ leaves. I know I have waxed poetic about the beauty and the rustling and even about the dance of leaves. I believed everything I wrote also.

Today however, I remembered fall. I kicked away the leaves and left. As I drove up the driveway there was a little swirl of fallen leaves as I drove by. These are those brown lifeless leaves, the kind that need to be raked.

I came home and swept my front porch. That was just a couple of hours ago. Looking out, it needs swept again. I really haven’t bothered with my side porch yet. I know once I start I will be doing it several times a day. At least with snow, you can shovel it and it remains a path of sorts. Our leaves, they just pile up.

Soon our driveway (gravel) will disappear. You will turn into our driveway and won’t be able to tell what is yard and what is gravel unless you know where it is.

Yes, I am grousing a bit about this, but, it’s not that I am disliking or angry about it all. No, I still love fall. Truthfully, I won’t be sweeping often to keep the porches clear, but I will make certain they won’t be slippery to walk on.

Our first frost warning was issued for Wednesday night (well, early morning). It’s a great time of year. I love the crispness and the leaves and the light.

I just smiled today as I looked at the side porch covered up. I could almost hear our Lord chuckling to me as if to say, “So, you love this season? How about those leaves?” And as I go to sweep them and rake a bit, I will be thankful to be able to do so. Thankful for a God who gives us seasons and lessons to learn during them.

Autumn Evening Light

As I stepped outside this evening, the light was incredible. The leaves are slowly leaving the trees and squirrel nests are visible from the ground. I walked outside to be inspired to write something. Like the fall season, it’s like my mind is slowing down and wanting to hibernate for a bit.

The scent of the leaves and the sound of the trees rustling gently in the evening light was just what I needed, actually. I love how the light disperses around our home. The shadows are cast and the highlights that stream through the trees always blesses me.

Our maple tree is slowly turning red and soon the branches will be bare. It will be a slow journey and eventually the wind will hurry up our road bringing a chill to my walks.

The grape vines are succumbing to the end of summer and they too will soon shed their leaves and wait to be pruned next spring. It seems like the world is slowing down, resting, preparing for a long winter’s nap.

All of this speaks to me, stirring up a yearning for me somehow. With some of our trees being cleared this summer, the pathways through are woods fascinate me. One of my favorite poems is by Robert Frost. It is written about the winter and yet, each time I look into my woods I hear it in my mind.

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

Robert Frost – 1874-1963

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Our woods call to me each time I see them. Each time I hear, ” Whose woods these are, I think I know”. I smile to myself, I know whose woods these are, they are ours. Our Lord has blessed us abundantly with this property. When we moved here, we promised ourselves and our Lord to take care of this place and have it be a place of ministry to any who visited us.

So, yes, I do have promises to keep and as every housewife knows, and miles to go before I sleep.

The Dance of the Leaves begin

Fall began today. At least according to the calendar. We went to do our Costco run and the car temp read 95 degrees. It was miserable, but the sky was bright blue and the clouds were puffy and white. It was a nice, albeit, hot day.

As we were exiting Costco, it looked like it was evening outside. Considering we got there around 1 p.m., I knew we hadn’t taken that long inside. We got to the car, put everything in and put our cart back. The sky was dark and threatening.

Dale commented that he hoped the storm wasn’t going to involve hail and off we went towards home. The temperature gauge in the car read 85 degrees. As we drove down the interstate, there were leaves blowing around the sky. I had already had the title for this post and wondered what I was going to say about it. I realized I had a post.

The rain was strong as was the wind. There was a ballet of leaves and pine needles going on above us and in front of us. We drove past a farm called Walnut Grove farm and all of a sudden we heard thump, thump, thump, we were being hit by something. We laughed (well, I laughed) and told Dale that he had said he didn’t want hail, but he forgot to mention walnuts. The nuts from the tree lined street were blowing the nuts to the ground and we were in the way.

The dance of leaves continued as we came home. I guess this is just the beginning of the colder season coming upon us. Soon the leaves will be laying on the ground preparing a covering for the spring growth.

I loved our homeward adventure today, but, I have to say the walnuts were a bit of a surprise to us.

“Rejoice, you people of Jerusalem!  Rejoice in the Lord your God! For the rain he sends demonstrates his faithfulness. Once more the autumn rains will come, as well as the rains of spring” Joel 2:23 (NLT)

Fall Shadows

Today the temperature is in the mid to high 80’s. Of course there is really no humidity so it makes the temp bearable.

As I walked out to the mailbox just now, the sun was shining brightly as I closed the door. I could feel the heat of the sun and the warmth it provided. By the time I got to the mailbox a slight breeze was blowing and I thought to myself, “ahh! Fall.” That glorious time of the year where you see the fluffy clouds in the sky and the leaves changing from green to yellow and red. It was wonderful.

As I walked toward the house, the sun went behind the clouds and the breeze felt a bit cooler.

My thoughts then went to how when we are walking with the Lord, listening intently to Him and reading His Word, we bask in the warmth of His presence. We can feel Him in all we do and we are covered in the glow of Him.

Likewise, when we drift away from the Lord, like hiding behind the clouds, our life becomes a bit darker, a bit colder, a bit lonelier. The estrangement isn’t noticeable immediately, but if we continue to drift away from His presence, the schism grows deeply.

“So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise.” Ephesians 5:15 (NLT)