It’s undeniably fall, even here in Texas. The trees are losing their leaves, mornings are crisp, and the holidays are right around the corner.
It has always been my favorite time of year, but ever since my life fell apart the fall has held a special place in my heart. You see, one fall in particular brought more than just a change of weather; it changed me entirely.
A few years ago I woke up one cool morning with a splitting headache and the realization that the prior day wasn’t a nightmare; it was my new reality. Grief took a seat at our family’s table and was there to stay for a while. Heartache became the norm, and I couldn’t quite find my footing. It seemed as if everything in life was falling apart and the weather and trees were simply following suit.
But that’s the beauty of fall.
Leaves are shed, the weather changes, and with every passing day I was changing too. And the fumbling that fall brought was what the Lord used to help me find my footing in Him. God was using the furnace of suffering to forge a new me and as fall turned into winter, I became bare-boned and raw before the Lord. And that was exactly where He wanted me. The people-pleasing girl who danced throughout the summer was learning to sit quietly before a Holy God who ordained both the summers and winters in life.
And the falls, well… He ordained those too.
It was the fall that taught me that both sorrow and joy could coexist and that holidays were meant to be celebrated in both seasons of great joy and deep sorrow. It was the stripping of the leaves that showed me that sometimes less was better than more, and depth was more valuable than breadth. And the cool air that took my first mornings’ breath away reminded me that my hope was not here in earthly joys, but in an eternal one. Fall taught me it was okay to not always be okay, and that the Lord who ordained every celebration, also ordained every heartache. And just as quickly as one season begins, it will also come to an end.
The fall took so much away, and winter was cold and barren, yet spring couldn’t come and fully be enjoyed without those two difficult seasons. Never have I loved a Springtime more than the one that followed such a cold and stripping season.
Years later, this sweet season both stings and brings an immense amount of comfort. And that is why it is still my favorite. I look at the changing season and am reminded that this side of glory both sorrow and joy commingle together to create a beautiful story of redemption. I sip the cider, let the cool air chill my cheeks, and I am comforted knowing that we serve a King who ordains every season, every change, & He cares about every leaf that falls. He ordains every valley and every mountain, and He oversees abundance and scarcity. And as I sit here with scars that will always remind me of the fall, I’m warmed by a resilient faith that was forged in that glorious season. For the healing that gave birth to those scars is evidence that our God redeems and restores.
Fall is my season of remembrance. Look what the Lord has done and is constantly redeeming.
The leaves may change and your life might fall apart, but “The steadfast love of the Lord NEVER ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV
Wishing you a Happy Fall and all that it entails. Praying that as the season changes, you do too and you find comfort in a Redeemer who never does. Because even on the coldest of days, the journey is still worth it all.