The other day I was in the middle of a hurried week. My ‘to-do’ list was getting longer by the second. Every time I looked at it, I felt confused about what to do first, so mostly I was running in circles. Standing in line at Target, I checked email from my phone. There was a message from my friend Jenn: “The trees are stunning. Interesting that the leaves are the most beautiful as they’re dying.”
For a brief moment, time slowed. Jenn’s words went straight to my heart where I knew they would swirl around gently until I caught the message.
The next morning, still thinking about what God might be saying to me, I asked The Husband: ” If age compares to seasons, what season are we in”?
The corners of his mouth hinted upward, “probably autumn, does that bother you?”
A few hours later standing on our upper deck, I stared at sunlight filtering through autumn leaves and prayed, I feel like you have a message for me Father, what is it?
The trees looked celestial, transforming their little space into a glorious display of purple- reds and orangey-yellows that made me almost forget their former selves. Most of them anyway. There were a few trees that seemed to be skipping the whole autumn display of color stage and moving from luscious green to crispy brown in a matter of weeks.
But why, I wondered. Why were some red, some yellow, some just ugly brown?
I stepped inside and did what I sometimes do when I’m wondering about things…
What I found was interesting on a couple of levels. Hang with me for a second…
Seems that some trees build up pigments over the spring and summer, when the leaves are young and green. When the green (chlorophyll) diminishes in autumn, the yellow pigments that were already there become dominant.
Hummmm, so in life perhaps, some people build up beauty in their youth. The kind of beauty that’s inside and doesn’t fade. Beauty in the form of Godly attributes like gentleness, humility, meekness, kindness and patience. When their youth diminishes, their inner beauty shines through. And it’s rather glorious.
I know people like that.
But what about those people who move into the autumn of life without a lot of inner beauty, is there hope for them…for me?
Well, it seems that those redish autumn leaves have an entirely different process:
As the chlorophyll diminishes, a red pigment, which was not previously present, is produced in the leaf.
Here’s what one source says about this phenomenon:
“…the trees expend resources on creating red pigments just as they are about to shed their leaves”
So these trees flourish just in the nick of time.
I know people like that too. I think I may be one of them.
“Father“, I breathed deep and whispered a prayer, “help me expend my energy on things that last. And please, don’t let me move through this season without beauty like those trees that go from green to brown…”
I grabbed my never ending to-do list and felt absolutely no confusion about what to do next.
I’m still counting gifts~ #991- choices made easy when I see them through autumnal eyes.
~Have a beautiful day Sweet Ones~