October 14: Oh, to be in the Autumn of Life

Sometimes I like to fancy myself a photographer. Sometimes a writer. A dreamer. An encourager.

Maybe I'm all of those things. Maybe I'm none of those things. Maybe I'm somewhere in between.

Photographer or not, I can look at those trees and say they are simply gorgeous. It doesn't take a good photographer to make them appear so--they just are. Fall is the season when many trees are at the height of glory. 

But the road to such brilliance is not an easy one to travel. After all, it begins with death. Looking like mere skeletons, the trees must endure a harsh winter. A stripping away. A falling down. A covering of snow and ice. The sheer weight of the wet cold, pressing down on them.

And yet, they survive those freezing and barren conditions. They have persevered. Stood the test of time and proven faithful. Since the old is gone, the new will come. New life. The sun shines on the new leaves, bright green with life, and the lovely, fragrant flower buds. The refreshing aroma of redemption.

The color of green deepens as the leaves mature. Did you know that autumn means, "a time of full maturity"? From the moment they first sprout out of the branches, the leaves on the tree are tirelessly working towards this goal. Preparing for it. Wind and rain, blazing sunlight, and even the first frost don't deter them. In fact, it's the frost that ultimately prompts the most drastic color change to occur.

They keep pressing forward until their glory is revealed, glory that points right back to the God who created them. Who put them in place to shine for Him, so that all the world could see and know that He is God. And there is nothing more beautiful, more inspiring, then watching one of God's creations do what they do best, what they were created to do: shine brilliantly for Him in the autumn of their life. 

Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. {James 1:4}