Autumn, jeans and sweatshirts, soccer, chili and fritos, white chocolate mochas...it's my favorite time of year! I love the cooler weather, the changing leaves, and the holiday spirit that you begin to feel as the end of the year draws closer and closer. This time of year, it is easy for me to find so many things to be thankful for.
I can't help but think, however, that as the holiday season approaches, some people will be and are facing very difficult circumstances. Seasons change, and the leaves with their brilliant, fiery colors of red and gold that I love so much, will dry up and blow away into the cold white of winter. So our lives experience seasons of vibrant joy and blessing, and times of difficulty and sorrow.
I have begun reading Ann Voskamp's book "One Thousand Gifts." She has a beautiful paragraph that describes a way of looking at our world where we can still find ways to "come before God's presence with thanksgiving," even in a winter season of our lives.
"I wonder too...if the rent in the canvas of our life backdrop, the losses that puncture our world, our own emptiness, might actually become places to see.
To see through to God.
That that which tears open our souls, those holes that splatter our sight, may actually become the thin, open places to see through the mess of this place to the heart-aching beauty beyond. To Him. To the God whom we endlessly crave."
As I head into Fall, looking forward to Thanksgiving, the end of my surgeries and procedures, time with family, cooler weather, new year's resolutions and changing priorities, I am also praying that from this moment on, I will live always with a thankful spirit in every season!