August is winding down, and for me it is really the last month of summer. While we may still have some warm days next month, I begin to think about snugly clothes and fires on the hearth and shorter days that signal the end of harvest season.
Each season presents its own glories. I want to enjoy each one in the beauty it offers.
Summer gave me fruits and flowers from the garden, the smell of fresh-cut grass, birds galore on the back deck, and butterflies hovering over blooms. It gave long, lingering days and time to visit with friends. And it gave Sweet William and me five wonderful weeks with our three grandchildren who live too far away. For five weeks they were here, running the lane with cousins, visiting former school friends and present relatives. We had fun together, drank pots of coffee, played games, watched movies all snuggled on the couch, and time was precious. Too quickly they are gone.
I’ve learned some things during the summer or perhaps rediscovered them.
One is this. When life feels like it is spiraling wildly on its own orbit and I can’t stop the madness, I start cleaning out. If my emotions are in a tornado, I will organize the desk drawer, sort paper clips by size, and put pencils and pens in separate slots. I see all the superfluous items that take up too much room in my house and my life, and in a frenzy I start making a pile to discard.
I talk to myself through the process with such comments as: “Why do I have so much stuff?” What in the world am I saving this for?” What is wrong with me that I can’t let go of these collections?” And most importantly of all, “Why do I keep accumulating more?”
With my emotional roller coaster rides, I should have the tidiest house in the world.
The stacks of discards get bigger as I look into hidden places. The Goodwill box in the garage has filled and I really need to make another car run there. I just realized I’ve been saving tax returns for way too many years and that the files in drawers full to the brim can actually be shredded. Why didn’t I know that?
A couple of days after I began my frenzy, something clicked in my mind. I organize when I am feeling stressed and out of control. When I cannot do anything about that which troubles me, I side track and start taking control of something I can. I’m not yet sure if this is a healthy, if it is a good coping mechanism or not.
Is it OK to focus on something within my power to do while I release my brain, even for just a little while, from the concerns that I am powerless to do anything about?
I’m still working on that quandary.
In this season of life, the Lord is teaching me to trust Him when I can’t see past today or tomorrow. And haven’t I been around this curve before? Of course I have. Sometimes, I slip into forgetfulness that God is the only One in control, and that I am definitely not. Patiently, He teaches me again.
He has reminded me through so many different avenues recently that He is big and He is strong and He is able to handle what seems insurmountable to me. That the concerns of my heart are also a concern of His. That the ones I hold so dear and love so deeply are the ones He loves most and gave His life for.
While I am so limited in what I can do (cleaning out a closet), He is limitless in power and wisdom, and He will do whatever it takes to accomplish His purpose in the lives of those I love and care so much about.
He is God Almighty. His promises are sure. He will not fail.
So as I prepare to enter the next season, I am looking into the face of He who planned seasons, controls them, and fulfills His divine purpose through them. He loves me. He loves them. My prayers are heard.
And I am learning to trust Him even more.