The story goes that when my parents were dating in college, my dad would collect acorns and give them to my mom. It may sound like a poor college sweetheart’s excuse for a gift, but my mom valued them more than expensive trinkets or fancy clothes. She loved their quirky little hats perched on their heads and their pointy little bottoms.
To this day it isn’t unusual to find a collection of leaves, stones, nuts, or shells gathered on my mom’s desk. She regularly sends me pictures of butterflies on flowers or birds at her feeder and I send her images of tomatoes from the garden and flowers that I’ve grown. My mom instilled in me a love of nature. And with that, an appreciation and love for God, the ultimate Creator.
I love fall. As nature prepares for winter, it sheds the glory of summer, showing off its best colors, scents, and sounds, before buttoning up for winter.
I can’t help but think what an awesome God we have to bless us with the beauty of this season.
Yes, I know winter is coming, and with it comes days that are shorter and darker and colder and grayer. But before that, we get to bask in the glory of his beautiful creation. The days are cool, but the sun is still warm. The blue sky seems crisper, and the leaves! Every year they amaze me. They are so vibrant and abundant (especially if you have to rake them!)
I wonder if maybe we wouldn’t appreciate the beauty of fall as much if we didn’t know that winter were coming. Maybe God knew we needed a few glorious weeks of sunshine and playing in the leaves and going on picnics to sustain us through the winter.
Take a minute to look around you. Go outside if you can.
Notice the trees, slowly changing color, filling the sky with a glow unlike anything man could produce on a canvas.
Bite into an apple, freshly picked from the tree, the skin warm from the sun, and let the sticky, sweet juice drip down your chin.
Stop and let the leaves flutter around your head, landing in your hair and sticking to your shoes.
Listen to the crunch of dry leaves and throw them in the air like confetti.
Gather with friends around a fire pit, holding your hands near the flames for warmth and watch the stars fill the sky like pinpricks to heaven.
I hope you find time to slow down and soak up this season before it’s over.
I’m so thankful that my mom taught me to notice the little things. We serve a God who delights in the details. He notices the little things like children and mustard seeds and grains of sands and sparrows. No matter how seemingly small or insignificant, he notices. He cares.