Seasons come. Seasons go. Right now we are in my least favorite season here in Texas. Especially when there is a drought. It’s just hot, hot, HOT every day without seemingly an end to it. I THRIVE in the cool crisp air that comes with autumn. My soul comes alive when the cool air finally swooshes through taking the hot, stuffy air of summer away with it to some far-off land.
But what if there wasn’t the brutal scorching heat of these summer days? Would the fall breezes be as welcoming? Would I delight as much if every day was a picture-perfect fresh assault to my senses?
I sometimes hear others say things like, “I can’t wait until the summer is over” or some version of “It will be nice when x, y, or z finally arrives.”
I understand it completely. I’ve said it myself countless times. But now I catch myself. I’m trying to hurry up time. I’m wanting it to speed along till the next better thing… But I really don’t want to hurry time along. I want to enjoy NOW. You see, there is a luxury in thinking you have all the time in the world. There is a luxury in complaining about today and not living in it…not being present… in thinking you have many, many bright tomorrows.
Looking forward to the future is a common human experience. It brings us hope, and its sidekick comfort, knowing things rarely stay the same forever. The winds of change come in and blow away the present hardship. And yet… when you love someone with an illness that may take them away from you … and you see a season ahead without them, NOW takes on a new meaning. Now becomes very personal…. and precious.
Surely the challenges we face in life, the times of crisis are what build our character. Our strength isn’t increased without the weights of life. Our stamina and endurance doesn’t grow without the treadmill and elliptical experiences. Depth of character doesn’t just happen all by itself without our permission.
We will all go through challenges, but what matters is how we deal with them when they come along. Obviously I am not the first person to express that truth.. but really… will we have learned anything? Can we use what we learned to help someone else? Has it made us more compassionate? Or generous? Less selfish? I have seen people become more beautiful with each pain they experience in life…. growing in strength, wisdom and beauty. And sadly, others who become full of resentment and bitterness.
Tree outside my bedroom window in the fall…
I often go kicking and screaming into challenges! Oh, God must not think me an easy student of life sometimes. But our times are in His hands. And TODAY is all any of us has.
One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon - instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today. ~Dale Carnegie
We steal if we touch tomorrow. It is God's. ~Henry Ward Beecher