The Leaves Are Falling

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The leaves began to fall this week. I saw them outside my kitchen window and stopped. It’s hot outside, and it’s hard to believe autumn will ever come. But this season will come to an end: The leaves are falling.

When I’m in the thick of a season, I begin to believe it will never end. But God is more constant than I can understand, he doesn’t let a season last forever.

My house is quiet. I can hear the whir of the kitchen fan. I spent the better part of the day going through a pile that’s become a monstrosity under the stairs. The leaves are falling.

At first it was one, then two, and now three children in the car, riding to school, waving good-bye to me—no one left at my side to feed and care for. It’s bittersweet. I feel like Rapunzel in Tangled: I’ve set my foot on the grass for the first time. I’m relishing every inch of it, then the sadness punches me in the gut unaware. I recover and am delighting in the refreshment of my soul. And then the worry hits around lunchtime—“Will she be able to open her butterfly sandwich holder?” The leaves are falling.

 I feel like a failure at the end of each family dinner—our children talking with completely full mouths, yelling over each other’s words, jumping up and down out of chairs, singing loudly, not wanting to eat the food I’ve prepared or microwaved. The leaves are falling. And they will learn not to interrupt and they will learn not to talk with over-full mouths and they will learn to speak at less than a roar and they will learn to stay in their popsicle-stained chairs.

Give me mercy for them as they learn. Give me mercy as I learn how to say “give me” like a child. Give me grace. Give me peace in the midst of the roar. Give me love. Give me thankfulness. Give me your eyes to see them well in this season and the next and the next. The leaves are falling, and they won’t stop falling because your name is Faithful and True.

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