The Leaves of Change

It’s that time of year when the crisp air greets the tip of your nose and the thought of warm chai tea and a fuzzy blanket sounds like a little piece of heaven. Once bare porches become homes to haystacks and miniature pumpkins while fragrant auras of cinnamon and nutmeg fill the air. It’s the fall season, and, if those hints didn’t give it away, simply look towards the mountains and open your eyes to the rainbow of colors starting to emerge from the trees.

While I miss the blue skies and endless summer vibe of California, I can’t help but to feel blessed by the beauty surrounding me. There is something special that happens during the start of a new season, and, for the first time in a long time I live in a state where I get to experience the sights, smells, feelings and sounds of change. For some this change is scientific, for some it’s magic, and for others it’s spiritual. For me, this time of year is expressive of all that and more.

Last year around this time, I stood inside of an empty house staring at the living room door. My feet felt like cement and my heart was so numb I had to put a hand over my chest to see it was still beating. I knew I had to walk out that door, but instead, I sat down on the hard wood floors staring at the bare walls around me. Just yesterday these walls had held the memories of family, love, marriage, and happiness. But now, they were nothing more than blank canvases of my failed past and a new family’s future.

Taking in a long, deep breath I peeled myself off of the floor. My head yelled at me to walk towards the front door and to stop being a coward. But, my heart continued to be taunted by this point of no return. For, on the other side was my packed up car warming up for the long and final drive from my home in California to my family in Utah. Walking out that front door meant walking into the unknown and I was afraid.

I started to walk, but not towards the front door, rather away from it. I made my way to the back door and out to the lawn. I wanted to scream but could only muster enough energy for hot, wet tears to slide down my cheeks. Maybe it was the warmth of the tears or the slight breeze that slid across my face, but a sudden sense of love came over me and I knew I was not alone. I gently got onto my knees and prayed. I asked that this place I had once called home would bring peace, love and comfort to the family moving in. And I asked that God would bring blessings of success and light to this new family. Finally, I implored his blessing to cleanse the home of any negative energy my broken marriage had left behind. With that, I felt this place no longer served me and it was time to leave.

In biblical scripture, there is a passage explaining the nature of timing. It reads:

There is an appointed time for everything,
and a time for every affair under the heavens.

A time to give birth, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.

A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to tear down, and a time to build.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.

A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.

A time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away.

A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to be silent, and a time to speak.

A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

-Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

We have all encountered times in our lives when we wanted to speak, yet, it was time to be silent. Or, wanted to laugh, yet, could only rally tears. This was a time of wanting to enforce my will and remain stagnate. However, Divine timing dictated otherwise, thus sending me full force into a season of change.

When summer yields to fall, the environment seems to completely change. A once vibrant covering of deep green turns into withering shades of lime, gold, burnt orange and deep reds cascading along the mountainside. It is truly majestic to behold, but the deeper beauty lies within the metaphor of acceptance that nature is offering up as a lesson. At the point the leaf begins to morph from green to yellow to orange and then a reddish-purple or brown, it is in essence sending a message of farewell to the world. The leaf, having served its purpose of provision throughout the spring and summer, is now ready to depart the comfort of the tree to furnish the soil below. In favor, the tree develops a special layer of cells at the point of the stem and gradually severs the tissues that support the leaf. With grace and unparalleled beauty, the leaf delicately falls from the tree inspiring new birth the following spring. As a final testament to the union, the tree seals the area of severed tissue that once supported the leaf leaving behind a leaf scar.

When I walked through that door on a fall day last year, I severed the relationship with the old me, placing a “leaf scar” on my past and preparing myself for the birth of anew. This season has not been easy; In fact, it has been the most challenging of my life because I left my comfort zone and am expanding in ways I never thought possible. I have also never felt so complete and full of love. Accepting the Divine timing and change of seasons He had in store has inspired me to move through my green into colors more radiant than I could have ever imagined. I wasn’t meant to live this entire life green. My authentic self and beauty was always meant to shine through in radiant colors and rebirth, as is yours.

We may not share the same story but we have all experienced the leaves of change. Some seasons will bring joy and others pain, but all are gifts meant to help open our hearts and steer our minds towards God’s plan. The change of seasons is a metaphor for the impact that change has on the soul. It is a time to die to the old and accept the new more radiant things in store for you. It is a time to recognize that life is constantly trying to offer us beautiful opportunities to grow into our higher self. The choice is ours and we must choose to open our hearts and literally “leave” what no longer serves us. Only then can we experience the leaves of change.

If this pathlight resonates with you, I invite you to further ignite your spark by engaging in one or more of the following activities:

 

Turning Faith Into Action

We are all here experiencing similar pains and joys. Part of sharing our human experience is expressing vulnerability with one another. Choose to share your “leaves of change” experience in one or more of the following ways:

  • Find a trusted friend and share your story over coffee, wine or some other favorite treat. Remember, this a celebration of you and your journey so make it an occasion of celebration and not a gripe session.
  • Start a blog or write a book to share your experiences and inspire others.
  • Volunteer at a hospital, church, or counseling center to spend time with those in need.

Journal Prompt

Think of a time when you experienced a change of season in your life. What feelings did you have about the change? What tools did you use to help you through?

Affirmation

I am stronger than I know!

Prayer

Father,

I am your breath of life.
Provide me with ample air
to move freely through this day.
You know the needs of my body;
the timing of my heart;
and the seasons of my soul.
Not my will, but, yours be done.
Amen

 

Quote Inspired reflections

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” – Romans 8:28

“As for man, his days are as grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.” –Psalm 103:15

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi

“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.” –Jim Rohn

Music

The Sound of Change
Dirty Heads
Click here to listen

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