It’s October 1st and while I’m thankful for the drop in temperature (we’ve gone from 90s to 80s), I find myself yearning for the colder temperatures as we now begin to progress through autumn. It’s hands-down my favorite season of the year. While I am an October baby, but I can’t say that that is the only reason I love it. There’s just something about it that my introverted-heart craves as the Summer season reaches about halfway through.
I think of the bonfires my brother, Jeremiah, and I held at our house for our friends. Those are some of my favorite memories now. I think of traveling all over Oklahoma to watch Joshua and Jeremiah play football. I think of myself, when I lived for basketball. I’m reminded of sitting next to a crackling fire, hot tea in hand, along with a good book. The smell of home-cooked food drifting through the house — my mother’s cinnamon rolls, to be exact. But, most of all, I think that I am reminded of the stillness of the life I once lived. Far out of the city lights, in a place not many people have heard of.
I miss the quietness of the country most of all when this time of year begins to creep it’s way back into my world. The smells. The work. The community. I miss all of it.
If I said I wasn’t thankful for where the last few years have led me, I would be lying. I am so thankful for the growth I’ve encountered. There are times, however, that I feel like I left a piece of me back there. I spent so much of my time wishing and waiting for something different, not realizing that it would one day be a place that I hold so dear in my heart.
Through my journey away, I’ve learned some valuable lessons. God has really begin to show me life from a different perspective, which I’m learning to embrace more everyday. Lessons like no amount of money, possessions, or even position matters when your heart is hardened. Money never has, and never will, buy happiness or feel a void in your life that’s meant to be filled with God’s compassion and mercy. I’ve found that, as people, we often turn to materialistic items and man-made statuses for comfort. I’ve also found that these things only bring temporary satisfaction and contentment. I think the same can apply to body image, grades, and many other things. None of it will replace what I think we’re really searching for.
In this season of my life, autumn and beyond, I’m trying to really lean in and hear what God is saying and showing to me. Sometimes it’s like the trees remind us that it’s okay to change, let go of the dead, and spend time on ourselves during this season of stillness. To tune into the Creator and let him do his wonderful work inside of us. To let go of these things that we think matter so much, like the leaves released in the fall.
Maybe one day I will make it back to the country. Maybe this journey was just to teach me to appreciate it more — I don’t know. Whether I’m meant to return or not, one thing I know is that I am most thankful to have known that stillness and those memories as a way of life. That in the smells, or small breeze of the autumn day, I can catch a glimpse of a sweet memory and be filled with the wholeness of that day inside me once again.
Thank you, Lord, for our time experiencing the sweet things of this life, before we knew they would one day be no more.