There’s a red maple tree in my front yard that simply goes along with the inevitable change of seasons. The leaves go from green to a bright red, then to a dried-up brown and finally the leaves fall off the tree. I’ll rake the leaves, mow over them and dispose of them. The tree is bare during the winter, blooms in the spring, becomes full in the summer, the leaves change again. The tree simply does what it was created to do and does not fear the upcoming changes.
What if we could live our lives open to a change of season? What if we could be so deeply spiritually rooted that we are ready no matter which season appears on life’s calendar?
Deep down, we fear change. Some people will do whatever they can to squeeze out the last drop of youth before they accept responsibility and face facts that they are getting older. The older generation conversely fears social change and longs for “the good ol’ days.”
However, what both sides don’t seem to understand is that life represents a simultaneous dichotomy of change and the status quo. In Ecclesiastes, Solomon mentioned “there’s nothing new under the sun.” Jesus mentioned that before his return life will go on as it did in the “days of Noah”- people lived their lives, married each other, and so on. In 1 Corinthians 10:13, Paul mentions that our temptations are common to man. I believe these three statements help put our daily thoughts and struggles in perspective.
Think about all of the people who lived before you- they were born, they worked, they raised families, they tried to be decent people in an indecent world, they prayed, they cried, they either faced or fled from what life gave them, and one day they died. You have the DNA of survivors and fighters running through your bloodstream at this moment. You can and will get through this. This too shall pass.
Then the thought arises that we too shall pass. Marcus Aurelius, the Roman emperor and Stoic philosopher, compares our lives to the leaves:
“The wind scatters one year’s leaves on the ground…so it is with the generations of men.” (Meditations 8.34).
Let us face today making the most of the time we have left in our season of life. Let us be thankful for each moment that we have and embrace those around us. Life will change, but it will continue, welcome it.