I stood in the middle of the cypress swamp and wondered at the change a season makes in the life of an ecosystem. The water dried up a month ago. Gone now are the toads and tree frogs. Gone are the mosquitoes that seek me out like a grand buffet. It was eerily quiet now; no sound but the wind blowing the fallen leaves around. I pulled my hood up over my head, and stuffed my cold hands into my pockets.
November is a lonesome month. It speaks of the end of things. The grass withers. Flowers fade. And, the dying leaves remind us of our own mortality. How fitting it is that we set aside days in November to honor our military dead, and to remember loved ones past.
All Saints Day, Veteran’s Day, and Christ the King Sunday all fall in November. We spend time in our cemeteries, planting mums and laying wreaths. We come to the end of the Church Year. We pull our hoods up over our heads, stuff our cold hands into our pockets and listen to the wind blow our memories around like fallen leaves.
But, the season of Advent also begins in November this year – that waiting time that speaks of hope and new beginnings. We are reminded that by his life, death and resurrection, our Lord Jesus put an end to Death! Because of Christ, we are comforted to know that these precious ones we long to see wait for us on the other side of the veil, just as we await the Lord’s coming again in all of his glory; the time when he will make all things right.
I nudge the leaves aside with the toe of my shoe, and there, under the blanket of Fall, a green shoot slumbers. I smile at the promise it holds of new life. Replacing its cover, I walk out of the shadow of the cypress trees and into the waning sun. The earth turns. Advent arrives. Christ will come again. And, I can wait.
May God bless your waiting time with peace and joy and laughter.
Pastor Barb <><
Wait for the Lord; be strong, take heart. Psalm 27:14