The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

By Lauri Beach
First United Methodist Church 

"For everything there is a season..."

 


The change to fall reminds me of an excerpt from Henry Ward Beecher’s Novel “Norwood:”

Once upon a time a little leaf was heard to sigh and cry, as leaves often do when a gentle wind is about. And the twig said, “What is the matter, little leaf?” And the leaf said, “The wind just told me that one day it would pull me off and throw me down to die on the ground!”

The twig told it to the branch on which it grew, and the branch told it to the tree. And when the tree heard it, it rustled all over, and sent back word to the leaf, “Do not be afraid. Hold on tightly, and you shall not go till you want to.”

And so the leaf stopped sighing, but went on nestling and singing. Every time the tree shook itself and stirred up all its leaves, the branches shook themselves, and the little twig shook itself, and the little leaf danced up and down merrily, as if nothing could ever pull it off. And so it grew all summer long, till October.

And when the bright days of autumn came the little leaf saw all the leaves around becoming very beautiful. Some were yellow and some scarlet, and some striped with both colors. Then it asked the tree what it meant. And the tree said, “All these leaves are getting ready to fly away, and they have put on these beautiful colors because of joy.”

Then the little leaf began to want to go, too, and grew very beautiful in thinking of it, and when it was very gay in color it saw that the branches of the tree had no bright color in them, and so the leaf said, “O branches! why are you lead-color and we golden?”

“We must keep on our work-clothes, for our life is not done – but your clothes are for holiday, because your tasks are over,” said the branches.

Just then a little puff of wind came, and the leaf let go, without thinking of it, and the wind took it up and turned it over and over, and whirled it like a spark of fire in the air, and then it dropped gently down under the edge of the fence, among hundreds of leaves, and fell into a dream, and it never waked up to tell what it dreamed about

This week the season changed from summer to fall and some say they are not ready. Change … it’s simply a reflection of the progression of life: the transition of seasons. We all know that there are seasons of the year – spring, summer, fall and winter – where we experience different things (weather) but have noticed that it is the transition between the seasons that are most difficult? That it is in the transitions between seasons when there are the biggest storms? The same is true for the seasons in our lives. It is the transition between seasons (e.g., in the midst of a divorce, when a family member is sick and dying), that are the more difficult.

Solomon, a man who had everything anyone could ever want but became unsatisfied towards the end of his life, writes about this when he reflects back on his life:

“For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance... God has made everything beautiful for its own time.” (Eccl. 3:1-4, 11)

What Solomon is telling us in this passage is that when God created us and life, He laid it out as a progression, and created a season for all things. Life is full of contradictions. Why? Because God built transitions into life. Unfortunately, you may not have any control over what seasons you’ll experience or what kind of storms you’ll face during the transitions but you do have control of how you respond to those changes.

Lauri Beach • Parish Worker

First United Methodist Church

 

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