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Yellow, gold, orange, red, and some remaining green.  Where I live autumn is on full display. 
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Whenever I have my eyes open, actually noticing what’s around me, seeing the Creator’s hand in what He has made, I am filled with awe.  He built such incredible beauty into everything.  Even in the leaves on the trees, turning so beautiful…as they die.

The trajectory of human life has often been compared to the seasons of the year.  The springtime is our youth, everything fresh and new, full of promise, vigorous growth.  Summer is our adulthood, at our peak strength, growing and maturing, days filled with productive work.  Then comes the autumn.  At first the shortening days are barely noticeable, but soon we find our mental and physical capabilities starting to fall off along with the leaves on the trees.

The trajectory of human life has often been compared to the seasons of the year. 

There are still nice days, but at some point we realize the harvest season is about done, and our days of producing a crop are in the past.  Toward the end of the year, nature goes into greater and greater dormancy, and so do we, until finally the winter comes, and like the leaves we go into the ground.

Not everyone’s life follows this trajectory, of course.  Some are cut down much earlier, some are planted in hard, growth-stunting circumstances.

My own life has pretty much followed the “normal” track, and here I am in the autumn of this year and the autumn of my life.  It’s beautiful out my window.  Here’s the thing:  If summer didn’t come to an end, there never would be the beauty of the autumn.  I’m trying to absorb the lesson from that.

There is beauty in every season.  Even the winter—although the beauty of winter is usually described as “stark”, for good reason.  Is there beauty in the winter we face, going into the ground?  I think yes.  Because—contrary to what is visible—there is a new life to come, that will arise out of the ground.  As Job said,

“For there is hope for a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that its shoots will not cease. Though its root grow old in the earth, and its stump die in the soil, yet at the scent of water it will bud and put out branches like a young plant.” (Job 14:7-9)

That is the beauty of our winter:  It holds the amazing promise of a glorious regeneration of life, a new springtime.  It will come.  We just have to wait for it.

For now, I need to remind myself to pay attention to the beauty around me where I am.  True, these days I can’t do all the things I could in the summer.  But it isn’t wintertime just yet.  So, what beauty might I be part of, right now?

Love, Paul



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