The Turning…

As I write this, dried vegetables simmer in beef broth on the front stove burner. It’s that kind of day when the wind blows cold and the green of everything has taken on a darker hue. I love this weather, don’t you?


red leavesIn Upstate New York are four distinct seasons. But sometimes spring seems an extension of winter, or it skips it altogether and heads right to summer without enough rain. And the gray skies…oh the gray skies! Yes, I’ve talked of them once before…they seem to occur 360 days a year. We try hard to rejoice anyway and faithfully take our vitamin D.

chickadeeSummer gives way to fall, and gardens die out to weeds; squash shrivels into brown somethings, and I find stray green beans that have turned yellow. It’s time to pull garden plants and send them to compost. Plants and seeds go to their death.

Purple aster

PicMonkey Collage

Earlier I walked, trying to find some late morning sun, but not today. It is a fall-sky day, wrought with sharp grayness. Even if it rains, fall is dry and crisp, much better to me than the humid-hot of summer. It brings an air of it’s own and pulls me along with it.

You can feel the turning especially in autumn. One day, you notice the daylight left quickly with summer. Humming birds desert the feeders; those quick energy burning little ones are first to move on. Geese band together in large flocks, floating and bobbing at the bend of the Susquehanna. They make a ruckus I can hear inside the house.

maplecoloredI will watch the turning colors, and I will see them fall. They will be splendid for a few weeks, and if winds choose to be strong, many will fall at once. But others…those copper oaks will cling to the branches long into winter. They will curl up like fingers on a hand and sing a crinkle song to the wind.

How can such beauty really be…death? And why am I not sad?
Because death and renewal go side by side.

Just as the seed dies to the earth, we die to our own selfishness to conform to the image of Christ. We desire to be like him, because he is so good, so faithful, and such a true friend. Because he has drawn us with a passionate love that does not die; love that circumvents all of life in its wonder and hopelessness, its courage and failure. We must love because he loves.

Leaves and seeds all fall to the earth to be poured on by rain, and laden under piles of snow and cold. After the white season, those seeds black and long dead will rise again with the turning.

They will grow fresh green in the earth. Leaves will appear on the serviceberry bush, the hawthorn bush, and the trillium will rise up in the shaded woods. There will be new flowers, herbs, and berries, and grass will grow and blanket the earth to accent the sky. Just as new plants rise, and trees refresh, we rise with new hope.

We are renewed, and grow stronger.

Yes, there will be flowers upon flowers, deep in the forests that no one will ever see. As we keep a sharp eye, we bond close with Him as we nod and appreciate his skill.

Does this matter to God?

Yes…beauty for our soul, beauty for the Creator.



“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

Psalm 51:10 NIV 


7 thoughts on “The Turning…

  1. Patty (Riley) Brake

    Diane, It seems like I can already notice some differences in your writing. It has always been good but, today, it somehow seems ever better. Did you learn some new things at the writing conference that have influenced your style of writing? Your word choices are always so good and present a clear picture of what you are describing along with the beautiful photos!! I really enjoy reading your blogposts! Keep up the good work and it will glorify our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. His awesome handiwork is all around us especially at this fall season of the year! Love, Pat

    1. Thanks so much Patty! This has been a year of growing in prayer and all I want to do is encourage my readers because it encourages me. What did I take away from Wilderness Workshop? Bonding with writers, brainstorming–it makes the mind come alive, inspiration in AK, but most important–grace and prayer as we strive for truth in writing.

      All the photos are on my normal walk. I pass by some very large cornfields! (Which is why I met a bear).

  2. Gray days 360 days and vitamin D?? You’re more prepared to move to Alaska than I am. 😉 Upstate NY must be on fire with colour now! Wish I could see it in person ~ but thank you for sharing your photos, my dear, as well as your musings on autumn.

  3. Stopping by from Holley’s… and so glad I did! Lovely pics, and a beautiful reminder that seasons are essential in life. Don’t you just love how the Ultimate Designer provided us with such great metaphors? 🙂 Grateful for a God who delights in details… Blessings to you from a very fall-ish day in western Canada!

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