Maybe I overcompensate just a bit.
But I love autumn, and I live in Hawaii, so come October I do everything I can to create autumn in my own home.
With fake pumpkins, scented candles, and (also fake) colorful leaves, I create an imaginary fall season for my family. I’ve got spiced apple cider on the stovetop, and soft music streaming through the house.
And though I’m normally not a crafty mom, fall is the exception there, too. My six-year-old and I love to watercolor landscapes of trees with leaves falling into piles on the ground (a favorite childhood memory,) and we even pull out the tissue paper to create collages of reds and oranges, browns and yellows.
Yes, fall is my thing.
Fall is also one of my favorite times to use nature as a springboard to teach my boys spiritual lessons. God is so creative in all He does – and the more we study nature, the more we recognize the incredible ways He shows Himself in the world around us. From the intricate details of a flower, to the changing of seasons, His handiwork is truly amazing. (I often wonder how many scientists must become believers just through their observations of nature. Surely many!)
There are many lessons to be found in nature, but in the fall I think of change. Change is all around us during fall…leaves turn color and fall to the ground…the temperatures dip down, and the days get shorter.
Change is what fall is all about.
So while we paint our pictures or glue our tissues, I talk to my son about seasons and we talk about change. I mention Ecclesiastes 3:3,
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.
I ask, what does it mean that there is a season for everything?
We just had a weekend with three birthdays celebrations (three!): Now that was a season to celebrate! A young couple we know just had a baby – what a beautiful season to be born…and another good friend’s mom just passed away. It was a sad time, but we accepted that it was her season to die. Seasons are wonderful and beautiful and sometimes they are also very hard. But one thing is certain: Seasons keep changing, and so do we. And no matter how much we love a season, the next one is coming, so we need to accept it, and we need to keep moving, too. Even my beloved fall season cannot last forever.
I admit that sometimes I’m not good at accepting new seasons of life. Sometimes I long for things to just stay the same. (I say to my son, “Can you just freeze as a six-year-old? I love you just like this!” and he giggles.)
Yet there is one thing that brings us such comfort; the fact there is ONE thing that never changes: God.
The Bible tells us that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8) This is good news! For when seasons change and people change and life is always changing, (and sometimes that’s a little hard) the God who made us and loves us is always (always!!) the same.
So we talk about the seasons and we decide it’s best to enjoy each season while we’re in it. We will love every minute of fall. (even if we have to mostly pretend!) We will enjoy being just a six year old. We will enjoy today and even this very minute. And then we will accept each change as it comes our way. (I might even let my little boy grow up to be big…maybe.)
But most of all we will look to God and thank Him for His never-changing nature. This is the good news that lasts through every season, and every change we will ever face. This is something to celebrate!
For more conversation starters about faith, check out our Family Devotion resources.