Leaves are beginning to change colour. Some birds have already headed south for the winter. The annual influx of Russian starlings has started- soon we will see the mass murmurations as they flock together at dusk. Migrating wildfowl are joining in aerial ballet, and probing the sands at the local RSPB reserve. The poets are inspired by autumn’s glories: perhaps we can be too.
“Why is it that so many of us persist in thinking that autumn is a sad season? Nature has merely fallen asleep, and her dreams must be beautiful if we are to judge by her countenance.” ~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge
There is so much to see, so many photographs waiting for my hungry lens. As the year draws towards its end, it dons glad rags and starts to party!
Autumn is a time of change and fruitfulness: as John Keats wrote, “Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness…”
The season reminds us of the importance of rest, and the necessary process of preparing for rebirth.
Some of my favourite sayings are found in the Bible. Ecclesiastes 3:1, “For everything there is a season.” In Ecclesiastes 3:11, “God has made everything beautiful in its time.”
Embrace the autumn. Rejoice in its splendours. Accept the natural rhythm and find peace in the quieting of the summer days. Let your thoughts turn in gratitude and thanksgiving for the time we are given and the gentleness of rest. Live in this moment, this season, instead of hanging onto the past or rushing impatiently into tomorrow. In the quiet, make space to seek out & find the beauty of NOW and the presence of God in the present. Leave regrets behind, and use this season to prepare for the unknown future. Seek the dreams of peace and joy.
May sweet dreams and beautiful colours become a vision of what God can do in our lives and, through us, in our communities and world.
Galatians 6:9 (New Living Translation) “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”
We may be sad for a good reason. Yet there is hope in the changing seasons of life. Sweet dreams!
“Reaching for the sky…” using a wide-angle lens at ground level, pointing straight up. A different view of the trees: they become abstract forms of line and colour, and the tree-tops seem so much higher.
Trees grow upwards to seek the sunlight. They compete for light because light gives life. It sets off the chemical “factories” in the leaves; we call this process photosynthesis. Leaves receive energy from the light, triggering the absorption of water & carbon dioxide; producing glucose and releasing oxygen. The tree “feeds” on light as well as the earth-minerals gathered by the roots.
I want to be a tree! (Sorry, I just remembered early drama at primary school.)
More seriously, our human life in a sense should be like the trees. We are earth-bound, yet we have high aspirations. We need the physical “food” but also the “energy” of true Light. God is Light – and we reach for the light. We are both physical and spiritual beings. Our bodily needs must be met, or we die. Our spiritual needs likewise. We must be rooted AND reach out to the non-physical. A verse in the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes always grabs my attention… “God has planted eternity in our hearts…” It’s why humans cannot ultimately be satisfied with physical treasures and experiences. We aspire to something higher. Humans ask the question “Why do I exist?”
This is why. We have a hunger, a need, a desire, to be significant. God designed us this way so we don’t settle for what is good, but press on to that which is BEST. We have an inner homing beacon tuned in to God. Go on, reach for the sky… the stars… and beyond.
“God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.” – Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NLT)