Fall is my favorite season of the year. I love everything about it other than the morning sun on the westward commute and the whole thought about winter being around the corner. Otherwise everything about fall is great.
Running through the crunchy leaves is my favorite. Making pies with fruit from the orchard. Visiting the pumpkin patch and eating those great big turkey legs. Football. The colors changing right before your eyes. Just working the word “foliage” into ordinary conversations. Halloween and all the fun costumes. Warm fires at night. Writing my sermons at some picnic table in some quiet part of some quiet park. Watching the boys play soccer. Candy corn – a eclectic mixture of cake and joy. The smell and feel of the crisp air. Frost eliminating mosquitos. Mowing season ending. Honey crisp apples. And Thanksgiving—my favorite holiday.
The calendar says fall is from September 22nd to December 20th. And the calendar is wrong. Fall is from Labor Day to Thanksgiving.
Here’s the deal: fall is nearly one-third over and it’s still summer. Even though I don’t drink coffee, I want to hear about people enjoying their triple pumpkin super-spice chai latte. Who needs a warm beverage when the heat index is well into the triple digits? I watched David’s soccer game the other night. By the end of the game all the players were still chasing each other but they were all walking. I went running the next morning. The humidity made it feel like I was running on a treadmill in hot shower. And the leaves all over the place are green. Green is a gorgeous color: in May. I’m still mowing my green grass ever four or five days and dealing with healthy mosquitos that are the size of hummingbirds. At least I get to drink apple cider when I finish.
I’m trying to be patient. I really am. But I own a black car with black leather seats that my boys affectionately call “the kiln.” It gets so hot in there that my Yeti cup melted. It’s hard to be patient when I want to see my breath in the air and the only moisture visible is the sweat on my shirt.
But patient I’ll be. I have learned the hard way over the last few decades that patience beats the alternative. Lack of patience leads to frustration and anger. It causes us to miss the joy of the moment. It creates unnecessary anxiety.
The Bible tells us patience is a gift from God and an attribute of love. So I’ll enjoy the feel of cold water on my head after a sweaty run and the smell of freshly cut grass as I mow this weekend. And I’ll enjoy the days as I wait for the leaves to turn, the cool air to arrive, and for God to do whatever God is wanting to do in me and through me.