Hints of autumn are upon us. On Saturday, Sturgeon Bay held its annual Harvest Fest. Vendors were selling summer’s last flowers, all sizes and varieties of pumpkins and gourds, and—forebodingly—even mittens and sweaters
Across the street from our house workers are picking apples in Wood Orchard, singing and calling to one another as they move from tree to tree. My wife Mary and daughter Betsy went there last week to buy a 10-pound bag of delicious Door County apples. Betsy made applesauce for her friend and Mary fried some slices with cinnamon for a delightful breakfast.
Outside our family room window, our hummingbird feeder sits idle—the hummingbirds deciding it was time to migrate. Farmers are taking in their crops of corn and soybeans and by the time Mary and I travel the length of Illinois in early November, the fields will lie fallow and bare.
The leaves on our maples, birches and sumacs are subtlety beginning to lose color and before long will take on shades of yellow and orange.
Although fall is a season of endings, it also carries the promise of new beginnings. Although we sorrow that summer is past, knowing that the snows of winter will soon enough be upon us, we can look forward with hope to what lies beyond those cruel months—the promise of new life that comes with spring. When daffodils will bloom once again, and our beloved apple and cherry trees will delight us with their blossoms.
We thank you, Lord, for the seasons of nature and for the seasons of life. For it is through them that we learn of your perfect ways, and we know that for every fallen leaf and barren field, new life awaits. Amen.