To Embrace the Turning

I found myself feeling remorseful this morning as I read the verses staring up at me. It was one of those times when my Bible randomly fell open in my lap, exposing my heart with the strength of the letters dancing before my eyes. Like a mixture of raindrops and hailstones, the words coursed and bounced through the crevices of my soul, seeping into its depths with a sensation that was simultaneously refreshing and stinging.

It’s no secret that I have been fighting against the turning of the seasons this year more than ever before. Like a defiant toddler, I’ve been dragged, kicking and screaming, into the beauty of autumn days. I’ve been throwing such a fit, that I’ve denied the beauty of the colorful surroundings and the crisp, starry nights staring me in the face. Stubbornly digging in my heels, I’ve tenaciously clung to the residual signs of summer, grasping for the last vestiges of sunshine and warmth which continue to slip faster and faster through my clutching hands.

And I’ve been irritated by it all. Irritated because I feel gypped out of summer. The days were far too cold, too rainy, too overcast, too short-lived for one so addicted to the sun.

In short, I’ve been facing the approach of what’s before me with a longing for what lies behind.

By looking back to hold onto and hold out for more of the same, I’ve neglected to enjoy what lies before me this day. I’ve failed to gasp in wonder at the debut of autumn’s unveiling, closing my eyes against the buttery yellows, stunning reds, and creamy tans making their way across the treeline. The crunching of fallen leaves has frustrated me rather than issued an invitation to dive into their piling depths with childlike abandon. Instead of being soothed by season’s changing, reminding me of life’s steady continuance, I’ve been saddened by it all.

Could it be that I have simply forgotten?

In my anxiousness to hold onto what is known and loved, have I somehow neglected to remember that God is the Shaper of seasons? Every. One. Of. Them.

With the purposefulness of all that Father does, He brings each season’s changes. He is the One who allows days to either shorten or lengthen, sustaining the precise hours of each with His own timelessness. How’s that for an oxymoron?

He who is timeless holds all time in His hands.

He who spins the axis of Earth upon His fingertips steadily turns the pages of each season of my life – those within and without.

And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the those who have understanding. He reveals deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with Him.  (Daniel 2:21-22)

God changes the times and the seasons because He realizes each specific moment of every day is imperative to the next. He knows that spring and summer could not produce to their full potential without the rest that winter and autumn afford. As much as I long for all sunshine and warmth, even I can appreciate the cool, reviving rains that fall in order to soothe the soil and bring forth new life.

In the smallness of my wisdom, I turn my gaze heavenward and once more ask for more. I ask God to come and bring a greater abundance of knowledge into my stubborn heart. I pray for a larger portion of  understanding to allow me to see beyond what I feel. For truth to nestle deeply when my faith seems so tiny, so fleeting. I ask for Light to shine brightly when darkness encroaches upon my days, squeezing itself into my waking hours and tempting me toward despondency.

For if He is light… and He is.
If He is always with me… and He is.
If He is both the Shaper of seasons and of souls… and He is.

… Then I can rejoice always.

ALWAYS – whether all is green and sunny with flowers and gardens in full bloom; whether dry and crunchy with wind stripping trees bare; or whether icy and snowy with all signs of the living silenced beneath clouds of gray and heavy blanket of white.

Life is still very much living throughout each and every season.

Not one heartbeat has ceased, no matter how dormant things may appear. The buds are being revived in secret places of hiding – held firmly by the Holder of all creation. Life is being formed anew in the darkness that is not merely fully known, but fully encompassed by the Light of the world warming its depths.

No shadow of turning.

Not one spot of gray able to dim so bright a truth as God in me and me in Him.

So I look to this turning season rushing toward me, and instead of fleeing from its storms or fighting against its cold, I reach out to embrace it.

With wind whipping through my hair and hailstones pounding for all they’re worth, I stand with arms outstretched and face lifted to the heavens as I open my eyes to look upon the One who steadily turns the pages of time.

And I whisper a prayer of thanks for each and every moment, trusting He knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with Him.

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