“It is well for us that, amidst all the variableness of life, there is One whom change cannot affect; One whose heart can never alter, and on whose brow mutability can make no furrows.” ~ Charles Spurgeon
The weather changed in the night.
I mistakenly threw on sandals in our mad rush out the door on Sunday morning, not expecting frigid droplets to seep over onto my feet from the damp grass. Climbing into the mini-van, I tucked my feet under me and pulled my arms through my “sanctuary sweater.”
My heart has always done cartwheels at the first signs of fall. As a school girl walking home from the bus stop, I’d pass neighborhood porch displays of scare crows, pumpkins and bales of straw. The lawns would be dotted and then covered with leaves turned gold and red. The breeze carried the scent of fireplaces lit, perhaps for the first time of the season.
It’s the oddest thing about fall. Even as everything moves inevitably toward the frozen death of winter, it feels like all is alive and fresh and new and wildly open to possibilities.
Maybe it’s the student in me, who still sees fall as a time of beginnings rather than of harvest. Maybe it’s just that I hibernate in the summer when the heat of the day is suffocating. In the fall, it feels like you can breathe in deep for the first time in months.
And that’s not the only oddity about the season. How can I, someone who resists all change and dreads it as much as a boogeyman in the closet, revel in a season that is all about change?
It just doesn’t make sense.
Yet, there it is. I love fall. But I’ve also tossed and turned these past few weeks over my kids getting new teachers (I liked the old ones); about their new lunch schedule (I liked the old one); about my new weekly calendar with kids’ activities, and church meetings, and the like (the old one seemed to work so well.)
Maybe if I had sought these changes out, if I had felt stuck and needed rescue, if I had been languishing and needed new life, then I’d be celebrating instead of whining.
But as it is, I’m feeling like I was kinda happy back there and this change, well I just wasn’t ready for it: No more ready than I was on Sunday morning when my feet froze in my sandals.
Life forces change on us, though. God’s goal of transforming us into His Son’s likeness, of making us new and new again, requires constant life-revolutions and world adjustments.
In his book, The Seasons of God, Richard Blackaby wrote:
“Newness is God’s specialty, a trademark of the abundant gifts He gives us—and as we traverse the unique succession of seasons He’s designed for us, we’ll find our way marked by fresh adventures, surprising encounters, and unprecedented fulfillment.”
So, it should be no more surprising than the cooling of the weather in September that God shakes things up in my life. Yes, change is one thing in our lives that’s constant.
Unlike Blackaby, though, I’m less inclined to call that an “adventure” or look forward to “unprecedented fulfillment.” I’m more likely to worry all along the way about what’s new and different and therefore out of my control.
Why is that?
I was reading this morning in 1 Corinthians 13 and noticing perhaps for the first time that love “always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres” (1 Corinthians 13:7).
I may adore my daughters and love my husband, but I can’t say my love for them always does anything. Sometimes I lose my temper or forget or say the wrong thing or see the negative instead of the beauty.
But God’s love, that agape, holy and pure, tried-and-true, never-changing love of His is an Always kind of love.
Even the rays of the sun filter through my window in different ways on different days at different times, but God “does not change like shifting shadows” (James 1:17).
So all this fearful anxiety over the newness of it all is foolishness really, because even when every tiny thing in my life changes:
God does not.
His love does not.
So, I pulled on one of my favorite sweaters this morning and opened the windows of the house to enjoy the breeze. I’ve lit my pumpkin spice candle and readied my recipe file of Crock-pot soups and stews. I’ve taken down the marriage prayer plaque and replaced it with my sign: “Bless This Harvest.”
I’ve settled in to enjoy the fall and maybe, just maybe, the change it brings.
What do you love about the fall? How do you feel about change?
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Today’s post is part of the September topic ‘Change’ by the ChristianWriters.com Blog Chain. You can click on the links on the right side of this page to read more articles in this series.
Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer for www.myfrienddebbie.com and worship leader. Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness. To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.
Copyright © 2012 Heather King
22 thoughts on “Sandals in the Grass: Time for a Change”
Great post, Heather. I love the crispness in the air in late summer/early fall, as the coastal humidity begins to drop a bit and we can breathe easier. We still have a couple of months of hurricane season, but at least now there are a few more comfortable days mixed in with the hot and muggy ones.
As for change, some of it I like, some not so much. If it means excitement, new things to learn, new places to go, I’m all for it. If it means mere disruption of routine with little discernible benefit, I’m more inclined to climb into bed and let it pass over me. Good thing God doesn’t put up with that nonsense. 😉
Yes, God has a way of pulling back the covers when we’ve tried to hide away from changes and shake-ups! Thanks for sharing, Traci!
I love fall, but I do get nervous ahead of time for the busyness it brings. Once I’ve “acclimatized” to the change – I settle into the new rhythm. I really like the quote you started off with. Knowing that God is stable comforts me greatly. ~ Wendy
I love the way you described it as “acclimatizing” to the busyness. That’s exactly what it takes for me and my kids, as well. Those first weeks when we’re still working out the schedule and finding what works and what doesn’t are tiring and tough. I can’t wait to settle into it. Of course, by then the schedule might be ready for another change!
Excellent Heather – I like the cooler weather and the feeling that everything’s trying to get in the last bits of summer (butterflies, wasps, birds, etc.) before it’s time to rest.
I’m not very good with change at all!
I never thought about nature trying to get in the last bits of summer, maybe because I’m all too ready to break out the pumpkins and sweaters. But you’re right; summer is still trying to enjoy the last possible moments of its season before letting go!
What a marvelous post, heather. I, too, love fall. It is my favorite season. It was interesting how you wove your thoughts together – fall is a time of change and renewal in many respects, yet we are quick to want to keep things as they are. Good thing God is the only constant in our lives!
I’m sometimes chastened by looking back and seeing how many of the God-ordained changes I fought so hard against and how they ultimately brought me the greatest blessings! I’m thankful God pursues His plans for us even when we balk at them.
Wonderful post Heather! I have always apposed change because it is a step into the unknown, it makes me “do” something. I fought tooth and nail for many years, until I grew to understand that change IS a gift from God, it reveals His love and provision. Even in chastening its His love is shown. I have begun to embrace change as Adventure 🙂 As for seasons I love Spring, but Fall has its charm as well. Peace and Blessings
I think it’s the unknown factor of change that makes it so hard for me, and yet you’re so right that this is a gift from God and while I may not be in control and I may not know what’s going to happen, He is. Praise God for that! Thanks for sharing!
I love the coolness of autumn, too, but alas in California we’re still too close to 100 degrees for comfort. You have to drag or kick me toward change but once I’m through it, I settle in and enjoy the newness–until you drag or kick me in a new direction next time…
Great post, Heather. I enjoyed your thoughts.
Yikes! It’s definitely too hot there to start in with hot cocoa and pumpkin pie!!
oh wow, i really enjoyed reading your post
Thanks for stopping by!!
Very nice Heather, maybe God made fall a more enjoyable season for us because we need this inspiration for “change” – I’ve come to not mind change so much because of some of the solid verses you’ve mentioned, knowing that He is constant and in control. That’s very reassuring to me!
Praise God for the reassurances He gives us in His Word!!
You’ve touched my heart! It seems change is the theme for my family this September. You’re post helps ease the tough realities that often accompany the more difficult or unexpected changes such as my family now faces. Blessings! And thank you.
It sounds like you’re facing many significant changes and I hope God gives you peace as you travel through them!!
Great post, Heather, and great writing.
Just last night, my husband and I went for a drive. The crisp air refreshed both of us. At the same time, part of me felt a twinge of sadness. Like you, I don’t like change.
Change can be hard to handle, for sure, but there is something invigorating about the crisp air! It sounds like a lovely night for a drive!
Ooo…I l-o-v-e fall! I love everything about it. Always reminds me of sweaters and knee socks! And I loved your post. Sorry I’m late. Trying to catch up. Thanks for this. Wonderful!
Hurray for fall sweaters! My favorite!!