The Majesty of Autumn

The Majesty of Autumn

It is officially Autumn in New England. Autumn brings a change in the air; warm days and cooler nights.  The treasures of harvest time bring feelings of excitement and gratefulness.  The most beautiful wave of color is beginning to surround us as summer comes to an end. Locals and people from all over the world come to New England to see the colorful countryside brought on by a large variety of trees but notably the maple. One maple tree by itself can display a gorgeous array of color from green to yellow to fluorescent orange and reds.

In the past few years I have intentionally tried to take notice of and enjoy all the little things. I refuse to hit the crazy squirrel trying to cross the road. I purposefully slow down to look for turkeys and deer even if the person behind me hits their horn. I encourage you too to not miss the sights and sounds  and smells all around us. We are in too much of a rush, too glued to electronics, too tired trying to multi-task and we are missing out on the simple joys of LIFE!

My family walks to a nearby stream where there are approximately 100 ducks ( the neighbors feed them) but they will be migrating soon. My hummingbirds have already taken flight and butterflies will leave also. How do they know where to go and when? Kids today don’t even think about it because there is no interest in what is happening in their own backyards. There is so much to learn from nature but we and our children are losing something precious – the gift of imagination and wonder.

Enjoy the beauty of the autumn colors while walking or driving or even when stuck in traffic .  No matter how bad the day or whatever the season we can choose to see and enjoy God’s beauty. A big buzz word we hear is mind-fullness but it really means purposefully using our senses to lift our heads out of the mundane and refresh our souls. Take time to smell the last rose, eat a fresh picked apple and take a walk in the park. Watch as the birds form a V pattern on their migration to warmer areas. Our hearts can be soothed in knowing that God is providing for them and will take care of our needs too. A reminder that we shouldn’t worry about the little things.

… look at an ant. Watch it closely; let it teach you a thing or two. 7 Nobody has to tell it what to do. 8 All summer it stores up food; at harvest it stockpiles provisions. Prov 6:6-8 (MSG)

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26  Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Matt. 6:25-26 ESV

Majesty is not a word we commonly use unless referring to the British monarchy. Majesty is the quality of being beautiful, dignified and impressive. How else can you describe a mountainside splashed in all the brilliant colors of a 152 count Crayola box -the largest assortment they make. It is awesome, breath taking and inspiring. The old hymn “How Great Thou Art” comes to my mind with the phrase ,”then sings my soul”. My wish for you in this season is to slow down and enjoy His beautiful masterpiece.

Changing Seasons Ahead

Changing Seasons Ahead

Leaf “peepers” come from all over the country to view the fabulous array of color in New England every fall.   “Look at the leaves”, “Oh, aren’t the leaves pretty”, the speaker said with a grin.  “Friends, what is so great about fall? I’m afraid to tell you everything is dying!”  Everyone replied with a groan.  IMG_6478

Autumn is such a wonderful time of year and yet it is an annual swan song.  While we are enjoying the harvest we are also preparing for winter.  Shorter and colder days require a change of clothing and preparation for the months ahead.  We also need to be prepared for changing days ahead – life is not static. It would be boring if it were!

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.   Eccl 3:1 (ESV)

Besides changing the calendar, what is changing in your life?  Are you in a new season of life?  Maybe you have a new career, new home or new status? You may be in a good or very difficult season of life. We can trust in our loving and faithful God to lead and guide us through every change and challenge we face.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.          Prov 3:5-6 (NLT)

I am in the midst of change.  Our daughter is married, our parents are all gone, I retired (my husband plans to keep working – yay)  and I have health issues that sometimes slow me down.  However, it has been confirmed that He isn’t done with me yet.

Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?                                        Isaiah 43:19 (ESV)

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There is more time for my  ministry of speaking and writing.  I need to be a little more flexible and a lot more tuned in to hear His voice by not being so “busy”and that is not so easy for me. Change happens whether we are ready or not! And so you see dear readers that my new blog is not completely ready to go live.  Please stand by because He’s still working on me!

Patches of Color Along the Way

Patches of Color Along the Way

Fall in New England

I love fall in New England. Autumn brings a change in the air; warm days and cooler WOLFall_113nights.  The treasures of harvest time bring feelings of excitement and gratefulness.  And most loved of all is the wave of color that surrounds us as summer comes to an end. Locals and people from all over the world come to New England to see the colorful countryside and enjoy the fruits of harvest.  We call them “Leaf-peepers”.

Driving along the highway last weekend I admired the color beginning to burst forth. I noted that it was most prominent in the valleys. I even saw a few beaver dams and I thought how wonderful nature was and how people that drove this way every day probably didn’t even notice.

Missing Out

In the past few years I have intentionally tried to take notice of and enjoy all the little things. Every day we pass by the wonders of nature without really seeing.  We miss the sights and sounds  and smells all around us…..why? We are too busy, too glued to electronics, too tired trying to multi-task…and we are missing out on joy and LIFE!  In Psalm 92:4  we read:

O Lord, you have made me glad by your work; at the works of your hands I sing for joy.                                                           IMG_6478

We can enjoy the beauty of the autumn colors while walking or driving or even when stuck in traffic . Look for graceful deer and funny looking turkeys. Stop to watch the squirrels as they do a balancing act on the wires above.  No matter how bad the day or whatever the season we can choose to see and enjoy God’s beauty. By using our eyes we can lift our heads out of the mundane and refresh our souls.

Lately our social media has been filled with disaster, tragedy and lots of violence. Watching and reading all of this “stuff” continually can be really heart breaking and depressing.  It’s not healthy to constantly dwell on the negative, even if it is true.

Think on these things

The Bible gives us guidelines on how to think about circumstances to lift our spirits.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9 What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.   Phil. 4:8-9 ESV                             

By watching nature of any kind we can learn life lessons.  The birds and animals know what to do for each season.  They focus on the one task before them, whether it is gathering food, fixing a borough or tending to their young.    mamaduck2

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26  Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Matt. 6:25-26 ESV

Choose JOY

Obviously, animals don’t have bills to pay or any agenda for the day. But we can choose what we see, how we think and how we react. To restore joy in everyday life take time to “stop and smell the roses”… “gaze at the passing clouds”…  “look up in wonder at the starry night sky” and look for the “patches of color” that are along the way.

 

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