Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Seasons

Fall is in the air and on the fence!


Here in Florida, it's always hot, but I hear we've been having cooler temperatures in the mornings. I wouldn't know for sure, because by the time I go outside, its already hot again...However, the beloved heat and sunshine that Florida prides itself with, has not stopped the Fall frenzy around our house!

As soon as the calendar rolled over to September, I dragged out the orange rubbermaids that house our Fall decor. I also recruited DW to pull out the scarecrows from our storage shed. I don't go in there. For anything. See, there's been sightings of rodents and reptiles and insects (the 8 legged kind) in there. I leave all the "dragging out" to DW. We took a trip down to the fence to hang the scarecrow brethren. Upon ripping into the double-bagged (Lord, thank you for my husband who makes provisions to keep the spiders and such from infesting all my stuff) scarecrow bundle, I was reminded of the determination that last years cows had when it came to amputating all of the limbs on my scarecrows...

When we got them all secured on the fence (3 on each side of our driveway), I had to step back and check them out... and laugh.

Our poor army of scarecrows definitely took a beating (and biting) last year.




All of them are missing either arms or legs and more than half are missing both. I thought about taking up a love offering to either repair or replace my scarecrow buddies... After we talked about it though, we knew what would happen. Same thing that happened last year. So if ya'll drive down our road, we'll be the house with the mangled up scarecrows hanging on the fence.

I haven't tried the haybales, pumpkins and mums down by the road, yet. But, I think I may give it a shot, but just keep it as far away from the fence (and long cow tongues) as I can. I've gotta do something to help my pitiful scarecrows look a little better....

Speaking of seasons, I've been thinking a lot about the seasons of our lives. (Not to be confused with "Days of our Lives", although sometimes I think that my life's seasons could be considered for "Days")...
Our family welcomed a new baby last week and if that isn't a sweet season, I don't know what is.
Signs and balloons had to be hung


and cookies HAD to be made!!
I can't help but think of how sweet and precious this time is for that little family right now. I drive by their house and just smile and say a prayer for them. I remember the joy and happiness and sleep deprivation and overwhelming emotions that come along with that first precious bundle of joy! There is nothing, absolutely nothing in this world like that... I thought about the season that my life is in right now. Then, I thought about some of my family and friends and the different seasons that they are in.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (NIV)
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.


Some of us are in a season of change...some in a season of confusion....some in a season of heart-ache....some in a season of joy...some in a season of great disappointment...some in a season of healing....some in a season of building....some in busy, demanding seasons....some in slow, peaceful seasons....some seasons are just beginning, while others are starting to fade into different ones....

We're all facing diverse things and are in different seasons of our lives, but there's one common thread: God is there with us.

It makes me think of the song, "God Leads us Along." My mom recently gave me a Travis Cottrell CD, and on it, Travis sings his arrangement of the classic song.
(What a beautiful arrangement it is...)
Refrain:
Some through the waters, some through the flood,
Some through the fire, but all through the blood;
Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song,
In the night season and all the day long.


Some of us might be resting in shady green pastures, while others are struggling to keep their head above the raging waters of fear, anxiety and hopelessness. Some of us may be dancing along the mountain tops while others are struggling to walk through a dark valley. The fact is that we're all at different places, in different seasons and facing different things, but no matter where we are or what we're facing, The Good Shepherd leads us along. The seasons of our lives change, but He never will. He will always be there, walking right with us through whatever it is we're facing, the good times and the bad ones. Not only does He lead us, but like the lyrics say, God "gives a song"---

Tonight after dinner, DW wanted to take Annabelle and I for a ride to the lake on the 4-wheeler. We set out, despite the dark clouds that were passing over...as we made the turn to head across the field to the lake, we looked up and saw a rainbow. I have gone years, and I am not even kidding, without seeing a rainbow. But, this summer, I've seen more than I can count. (DW and I were even lucky enough to see a rainbow that pointed down right on Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. We're convinced that's further proof that the Lord is a Gator fan! Ha...)

The rainbow, a symbol of God's promise, is the beauty that comes after the rain and storm. It's the "song" that He gives the earth after a rain. There's always beauty to be found... I have to wonder why it's been years since I saw a rainbow. Is it because their haven't been any? Or could it be that I just wasn't looking? No matter what we're facing, He will give us a "song" if we're willing to accept it. Have you seen any rainbows in your life lately? Have you been looking???
Tonight, I'm thankful for all the rainbows in my life.
Thankful that God gives me a song....

~annie~

11 comments:

Julianne Hendrickson said...

Love it Annie, great post. Those scarecrows are hilarious. I am just getting into decorating for Fall...first time I have ever had anything to decorate!! I hardly know where to start. But, I think I will wait until Michaels etc has their after the season sales (if i can hold on tight) so that NEXT year I can have a great display.

Janie said...

Annie, thank you so much for the sweet words of inspiration! That is one of my favorite sets of scriptures...thank you for reminding of it's beauty.
I love the scarecrows..I have three that I have collected over the years. Ours look similar only my dogs got a hold of mine..ha!! You have inspired me to get all my fall stuff out..I bought some candles yesterday and I can't wait to get them all out and get in the "season"!
I can't believe that you live in Williston! I know LOTS of people from Williston....that might not be such a good thing though ;)!! I did see on your wedding photos that we have a mutual friend...Katie Jones! I did lots of FFA stuff with her, we went to UF together and she was even at my wedding! What a small world. I know of the Whitehurst family. Growing up on the river and in the agriculture community its hard not to hear of that family! My maiden name is Cannon. My parents reside in Romeo and farm there. One of my favorite places in Williston is the Ivy House...yum, yum!!!
Thanks again for all your sweet words of inspiration and I am so excited about our blog friendship!
Keep the faith girl!
Janie

Jill said...

What a beautiful post!!! just something that has Blessed my day! I needed to "hear" those sweet words!
Thank you!
Many Blessings!
Jill

Charon Benton said...

Well..I had already emailed you today....but...I think the scarecrow thing is funny b/c you know the same thing happens out here....and about those seasons...AMEN. I needed that today! Love ya.

Lemonade Makin' Mama said...

You know, you are just about the sweetest person I think I know. You always just get straight to the heart of well... the heart. I love it, and I love how willing you are to be vulnerable and what a precious encouragement you are. So often people are going through their own yuck and they can't lift up their head long enough to encourage those around them going through similar yuck... you are not at all that way.. you always just take the time to encourage and I hope that you are tremendously blessed because of it!

Love the scarecrows too by the way. darling. Fall just makes me feel all cozy inside.

Becky said...

Good lesson, Annie, an important one too! And as for your scarecrows, don't worry about them, they are still precious. P.S. You have a good husband to help you fight the insects & critters you AND help you hang the scarecrows!

Lyndsay said...

I love the scarecrows! They have character and it makes for a good story too. I am so thankful for the wonderful season that I am in right now but I know that no matter what wind blows my way I can be content. Thanks for the reminder.

Heather said...

Great post Annie!! I love reading your thoughts, your so inspiring! Love the scarecrows!

Carrie said...

Those scarecrows are cracking me up! You need to take everything out of the shed and spray it down with some good stuff. Clearly everything in there is in danger. Hello, your jogging stroller that the rats ate holes in. Yikes!

I agree with Lyndsay, your scarecrows are showing character and who in the world wants to spend money on scarecrows year after year!

Love that you are taking time to ponder this season of your life and being thankful to God for this special time. Thanks for the reminder that we should all do the same.

Whitney said...

Great post! Your scarecrows are so cute and I REALLY love your pumpkins in your urns. I did something similar a few years ago.

Stephanie Heintz said...

Thank You.
I love you.