Early September, and already yellow leaves appear amidst a green tapestry. Air is cooler, crisper here, in the morning, and skies are darker, too. September already, we say. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas wait in the wings.
It’s this way, more or less, every year. But do we notice? Or are we just trudging through? Do we accept and embrace the changes occurring, however gradual, however unwelcome? Do we flow with life’s natural shifts? Or do we resist and fight the divine process?
Sometimes people say they want change or that they wish something would transform, though few are willing to do the deep, soulful exploration necessary. The personal assessments which help us release and let go, and welcome the new, also require some dark nights of the soul. Sometimes people tell me they just can’t do it. It’s too hard and too scary. Sometimes they say: “The devil I do know is better than the devil I don’t know.”
Except, as the prophetic David Bowie first noted in 1971, “Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes / Turn and face the strange / Ch-ch-changes / There’s gonna have to be a different man.” And when we choose to face the “strange,” we also can choose to turn “devil” around so it becomes “lived.”
Lived: How we’ve lived for a specific time is familiar, though not always comfortable, easy, fulfilling, or fun. Strategies we use to accomplish things are habit, though they may not serve what’s highest and best for our lives now. So, we wonder, in rare, reflective moments, what that might be. Which leads to other questions:
- What would feel more comfortable?
- What would give us more ease?
- What would be more fulfilling?
- What would make life more fun?
- What one (1) thing are we willing to do now, today, to begin living differently, even though it seems strange?
- What old habits are we willing to release?
- When we imagine a joyful, fulfilling life, what do we see ourselves doing? And having?
- What changes are we willing to embrace to create a new way of life, no matter how strange it now seems, no matter our age?
As we contemplate these questions, we may first realize that some answers are, “I don’t know.” Yet, as we embrace the willingness to change, we discover that our answers come to us and that facing changes is more pleasant than we thought.
As we take time in the silence and as we get into nature, no matter where we live, we can notice subtle changes occurring around us, reminding us of the sacred, continual process of change. And always, we can remember: God’s awesome power and presence, God’s love, grace and compassion are in the midst of all the changes, as we gently turn and face a new life unfolding before us.
© 2018 – Rev. Jennifer L. Sacks. All rights reserved.