Oct 15, 2023
"Autumn is a season of Remembrance – where we remember what God has done for us and are thankful and praise Him for His Goodness."
Can we reflect on God's goodness as the seasons change and Winter approaches?
I called my husband, Don, into the prayer room. Outside the large windows adorned with white faux wood blinds, we marveled at the first leaves of Fall changing their hues. I had anticipated this moment—the vibrant burst of colors. Yet, soon, the trees would shed their foliage, nearly stripping themselves bare. Don remarked, "See, Fall has arrived," as I recalled the skeptics who had doubted its arrival this year.
We had just returned from our annual beach trip to Florida, which we had delayed this year, allowing us to experience the transition from Summer to Fall. At the beach, it still felt like Summer, despite what the calendar said. We basked in the sun, enjoyed the ocean waves, and relished in the warmth. I asked Don what Fall meant to him, and he replied, "Football, turkey, outdoor barbecues, watching the leaves change, and eventually raking them up." I nodded in agreement, acknowledging the beauty of the leaves, even though I knew they would eventually fall and need to be gathered into piles.
As I contemplated this change of season, I pondered my own feelings about Fall. Had I harvested and reaped what was necessary in my life? Were there things I needed to let go of?
Don and I had just emerged from a challenging and demanding season, facing trials that felt like walking through a den of lions. Yet, with God's guidance, we had made it through. Now, we found ourselves on the mountaintop of faith, enjoying the harvest and redemption that only God could provide after such a trying journey.
I reflected on the various changes happening in my circle of friends and family—some leaving long careers behind, others facing unexpected health challenges, and some embarking on new journeys like my brother-in-law with his new job. In some cases, I witnessed how God had transformed adversity into beauty.
I questioned the nature of this season and why I felt hesitant to fully embrace it.
I admitted it: as the season began and everyone around me discussed Autumn, shared fall-inspired pictures, and engaged in debates over chips and salsa versus pumpkin spice, it left me somewhat uncertain. I noticed a friend posting pictures of her fall wardrobe, complete with plaid skirts and pumpkin-colored dresses, and another wearing flannel. I wondered if I was ready for the transition, as I still sported shorts and sundresses with sun-kissed skin.
My husband hung up our Autumn wreath and surprised me with a bouquet of sunflowers. I heard Autumn beckoning me, assuring me that I belonged in this season. The birds and squirrels seemed to concur as they went about their preparations, and farmers worked tirelessly in the fields. I could almost hear the angels singing. God whispered to me, "This season is for you as well. You belong in this time, from the beginning of time to its end. Come, dance with me." I felt the leaves crunch beneath my tennis shoes, the breeze brushing against my shoulder, and my husband's love as we decorated the house and simmered apple, cinnamon, and vanilla potpourri on the stove.
"Join me in the soothing lullaby of the Harvest," God urged, "I have provided for you, and I want to fill you with joy that will spill over to others. This is a season of celebration, solace, and remembrance."
Amidst the wind, songs, and devotions, I reminded myself to remember God's goodness. He had chosen and treasured me. Autumn was a time for both Harvest and the preparation of our hearts through gratitude and remembrance. It marked the beginning of the Holy Days, tracing back to an exodus that continued to shape our lives, leading us to the most significant event in human history—the birth of our Lord Jesus, which ultimately led to redemption.
So, I took the leap, embraced this Harvest season, and donned a rust, gold, and cream dress. Walking the path near my home, I inhaled deeply, resting in God's love for me. The warmth of the sun caressed me, and I felt immense comfort. There was a change in the air, and a full, radiant moon graced the sky. I rejoiced in the moment, knowing that it was a privilege to be alive.
Down the path, as sunlight filtered through the trees, I noticed some leaves beginning to change. It was a symphony of colors and transformation, a masterpiece crafted by God Himself. But I wondered, how do we, as God's people, navigate this sacred season? It was a time for thanksgiving, rejoicing, and gratitude, as seasons always brought transformation. This particular change, however, was God's reminder to remember His goodness during the Autumn of our lives, preparing us for the Winter ahead.
The bountiful Harvest sustained us during leaner times, both spiritually and physically. God's wisdom in leading us through the cycles of nature mirrored the seasons of our lives, and together, we walked hand in hand.
"O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever" (Psalm 136:1 KJV).
Autumn served as a season of Remembrance, where we acknowledged God's blessings and praised Him for His goodness. His grace flowed not because of our deeds but because He was inherently good.
Our eternal journey, regardless of our circumstances.
Heaven as a place of abundance and plenty.
Past blessings and God's faithfulness in providing.
Gratitude for daily blessings, recognizing that God's goodness extended to the ordinary.
Living in a state of thanksgiving, finding joy in it all.
Autumn was a delicious season of Harvest, when leaves fell and we reaped what we had sown. It was a season to hold onto faith and believe in God's promise that it would be beautiful.
For it was a privilege to be alive, and I vowed to make every day count. This seasonal display was orchestrated by God and always arrived as a reminder:
God remained in control.
His nature was unchanging.
His power extended over all creation as the Creator and Artist behind all this beauty.
Remembering God's goodness in Autumn prepared us for Winter. The abundance of the Harvest sustained us during leaner times. God had provided us with this beautiful planet, the gift of breath and life. Shifting our hearts towards gratitude helped us remember that when Winter came, we needed to have faith and trust that God was still in control. Just as the leaves fell and lay dormant in Winter, they would burst forth with life in Spring, mirroring the resurrection of Jesus and the eventual celebration of all Creation.
A Harvest Prayer
Dear Heavenly Father, We thank you for the Sacred Seasons, both in nature and in our lives. These transformations, seen in the changing leaves and bountiful Harvest, remind us of your presence. May we gather together in your name, whether at our tables, pumpkin patches, or football games. May we encounter you in every aspect of the changing seasons, for everything has its time. Thank you for your boundless love and for including us in the magnificent transformation of life itself. May we share your love with everyone we meet as we prepare for the greatest gift of all—the celebration of the birth of Jesus. Thank you, God, for equipping us and all of Creation for Winter in the dance of Autumn.
In Jesus's name, Amen.
Deborah Rutherford is a Christian wife who loves to write stories, devotionals, and poetry. She is also an award-winning makeup artist. Deborah shares her journey of faith, joy, and beauty on her blog at www.deborahrutherford.com and social media. She is a contributing writer for Aletheia Today Magazine, Kingdom Edge Magazine and Gracefully Truthful Ministries and has a devotional in the book “Shepherd on Duty: Promises of God you Can Trust” (Arabelle Publishing) and the Calla Press, Literary Journal Spring 2023.