(by Carmen Gauvin-O’Donnell)
Fall has always been my favourite season (followed by winter… yes, the more snow, the merrier, as far as I’m concerned. There. I’ve said it. Feel free to mumble to yourself about how Carmen is living proof that broken people really can lead productive lives.)
But first among seasons in my heart is autumn. I mean, what’s not to like? The colours… the cooler temperatures and crisp morning air… a fire in the wood stove… the sound (and distinctive smell) of dead leaves crunching under my feet as I walk in the woods, the sight of birds and squirrels and chipmunks, considerably fatter than in the spring, scurrying about busily in final preparation for the winter to come.
Not to mention a harvest of turkey and stuffing and fresh apple pie… yum!.. and an extra hour of sleep on November 1st … but I digress! :)
What I love most though, are the colours of the world around me, that rich palette of reds and yellows and golds and browns. If you’ve ever taken a drive in one of our provincial parks at this time of year, you know exactly what I mean.
And do you know what is most incredible about this beauty? It’s all dying! It’s in the throes of death, but God in His creative genius ordained that it would happen in such a way that we would be awed with its beauty, even as it dies.
I started thinking about that one day and suddenly realized that here was an image and lesson for all of us: in order for nature to live next spring, it must die this fall and shed the old in order to put on the new. And in the same way, we must die to self so Christ can put “the new man” (or woman) on each of us.
So that’s the question I ask myself, and all of you, this week: have we been crucified with Christ? Because if so, Christ calls us to die to self on a daily basis for His sake.
And there’s a point behind it too: like all those trees and plants in nature, the beauty of one dying to Christ should leave the world awe-struck.
Matthew 5:16“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”