Relationships, life, circumstances, plans – are all just as transitory as the deciduous leaves on a tree. Leaves change colors and fall in autumn. Relationships change, our hearts change direction, health is threatened by sickness, and plans for the future change often, making it necessary to adapt and adjust on a moments notice.
I find myself getting extremely overwhelmed and driven to despair sometimes at how increasingly transient so many things are at this point in my life. At twenty-one I have seen so many changes in the last 10 months of my life that I am all the more aware of just how remarkably fleeting the things before our eyes can be. My father suffered a traumatic brain injury and cervical fracture in a head-on collision in April of 2014; there have been frequent doctors and emergency room visits dispersed throughout this time (before and after) not to mention therapy and visits to different specialist to assess how his injury is healing over time. I have seen relationships change in my life as I learn more about who I am and find my voice beyond years of hurt, silence, and passiveness. My educational career has seen many ups and downs as well in these last few months; not to mention changes at work. I am not saying these things for you to say “awww poor thing, wow!” There are things I won’t even mention; but the picture I am painting is just how quickly things can change- one day you are fine and the next day you are in the emergency room; one day you are planning a future with someone and the next you are faced with what seems to be irreconcilable hurt and you’re wondering – “Where did this come from? Why is this happening ?”
What I find most profound about moments like these or periods in our lives marked by change that affects our lives far beyond the results of specific situations themselves- is the truth that the suffering and pain brought about in these moments points you to… Truth- that you sometimes would overlook or become apathetic to in your mostly “comfortable” life. It makes you see beyond this sojourn and past the things that are quickly fading. I get too comfortable with unanswered questions and anxiety that I look away from a situation or run to evanescent pleasures for escape (yes that fleeting- like vapor!). However, I was reminded today that DESPITE how much things are changing in my life, God is not a deciduous leaf on a tree. He is UNCHANGING! His love endures; it is endless, eternal, undying, consistent, perpetual, permanent, and ceaseless! So although I am weak and am being made more aware of this in these moments at home, at school, and in relationships- He is making me aware of just how much I can’t do it alone; and just how much stronger He is to conquer my weaknesses and not allow them to overcome me! I am happy that I am loved by a God who- despite how fickle I can be- knows my heart, and loves my flaws. He thinks they make me beautiful! Having to face this head on – is forcing me to believe it – He still loves me even when I falter under temptation. He knows far before I do when I will choose my own feelings or desires over His will – so it comes as no surprise to Him even though it surprises me.
Although I am like the branches that hold those crunchy, deciduous leaves outside right now on the ground being blown around – He created those branches, those leaves ,and He created me. Although leaves fall, when Spring time rolls around new blooms emerge; and so I see these moments as times of purging – even though I can’t see why it’s necessary at times I see the direction each new challenge pushes me towards- trusting His will and way more than I trust the ephemeral tendencies of my own heart and mind.
So today I find joy in the fact that my God loves me, He saved me, and He will finish what He has started in my heart despite how much the things that I see and even my own heart deceive me to believe this is not true.
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light and momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weights of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal!”