We have so much to be thankful for, and not just at Thanksgiving. But it does seem like this is an especially appropriate season to say, “Thank you, Lord, for the bountiful blessings you’ve showered upon each of us.”
Autumn has not been my favorite time of the year, but the leaves do put on a colorful and gorgeous display before they release their grip and flutter to the ground. They’ve danced and swayed all spring and summer, providing welcome shade to protect us from the sun’s heat. Now they’re wrenched from the branches they have so tightly as the cold north winds bustle on by. And cascade down to replenish the soil… in the never-ending cycle of life.
Just as the leaves have slowly changed with the season, so, too, have the birds. Come early August, their joyful twittering has begun to lessen. By the end of the month and into early September, most of them have felt that inner urge to pack their suitcases for their flight to their southern homes. Birds migrating north, and birds who remain here over the winter, stop in for a bite at our 24-hour cafes, or eat the berries still on trees, bushes and vines. They sing, but it’s not the same as when they serenaded us during the warm weather while raising their families.
With the air becoming crisp and cold, frost settles on everything, followed by the first sparkling snowflakes gently fluttering down. Some of our birds find cozy shelters inside the evergreens, a reprieve from the raw elements. Even some critters of the field and forest have begun to contemplate the best hibernation dens while others simply seek nightly shelter for sleep from prying eyes.
Slowly these seasonal changes creep upon all of us, and we sense the changes within ourselves. We harvest the last of the veggies and fruits in our gardens, and bring crops in from the field for the livestock. Then, while getting ready to settle in for the coming long winter months, we pick up those projects we set aside for a dreary rainy day.
As we begin to slow down in this season of change, what better time to contemplate and take stock of our blessings in abundance. With thankful hearts, we praise God for all this and so much more.
Linda A. Roorda
The carefree days of summer pass
As another year of memories ends
With grateful praises offered anew
Our thankful hearts share bounty blest.
The birds have hushed their lilting songs
Bright colored flowers have faded away
The trees have lost their brilliant hues
And the sky with clouds is looming dark.
The somber heavens lie cold and gray
O’er gardens bare of blooms that died
As leafless trees hold quiet birds,
With tinge of smoke on chilly breeze.
This silence brings quiet reflection
A time to gently contemplate
All the dreams we still hold dear
A time of peace and time of blessing.
For in this season we find a rest
To slow our feet and nourish our soul
To strengthen bonds and to friends draw near
Showering love from grateful hearts.
Then blest are we when to our Lord
Praise we bring for all that’s ours
Of friends and family, and harvest bounty
Blessings abound in thankful hearts.
Linda Roorda writes from her home in Spencer.