Fall became my favorite time of year when I moved to Southwest Virginia six years ago. Before, the transition after summer was so gradual that it was a bit unremarkable. But the mountains change something, and, one night, the warm air just says, “I’m done,” and hibernates.
The cold air swoops in to say, “Did you miss me?” and, in a beautiful chorus of smiling faces and knit sweaters and tall boots, Southwest Virginia screams “yes.”
No one mourns the summer’s departure around these parts. With trees everywhere, all views of our little town transform into a patchwork quilt of oranges and reds and browns and yellows and greens. It takes a bit of self-control for me to not squeal when I walk outside and realize I need a jacket. Customers emphatically declare they want a pumpkin spice latte just because they can, and sitting around a bonfire wrapped in flannel blankets is a staple of the season.
This year, I’m going a bit farther than the glee. I’m focusing on recognizing why this season is simply amazing. It’s the little things, like vibrant leaf changes, friends and family gathering around the television for football, and all sweets infused with cinnamon. But it’s more.
Because the King of the universe knows us, He’s aware of what we find beautiful, and He gives it to us.
In the very beginning, “God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good.”
Beauty is seen not only in the environment, but also in what this season brings to community. We recently put up a banner hanging over our dining room table that reads “GATHER,” and that we plan to do. Fall forces people to simply come together. Whether it’s for a football game, a back-to-school night, an apple-picking outing, Thanksgiving dinner, or just random Monday night pizza with friends, this season invokes this wonderful sense of urgency to be around good people.
I love stripping the science out of it all and proclaiming that His intimate love for His children is seen all around us. Then, we can add the science of the seasons back in to realize the intricacies of His creation, and His majesty becomes even more magnified
How often do we give credit to the Creator of the seasons? God could so easily have picked a mild temperature that retained its composure throughout the year. But He didn’t, and He didn’t because He knows we love it. What He wants most is His glory, so, when we celebrate the fall, let’s do more celebrating of He who made the fall.
The brushstrokes creating leaves on trees and in the air and on the ground and all around. The shadows as the sunsets sooner. The smudges of cold air, the sketches of thick blankets, the reflections of wind on rippled water. The colors simply take on a deeper hue, and it’s a masterpiece just waiting to be admired. The Artist’s talent is unmatched.
My goal this fall is to let the joy of the season shine for His glory. As I admire this world He’s given us to call home, I’ll embrace the squealing and praise His handiwork.