Inkspill No. 16: Dreams and Plentitude

A photo by Autumn Mott.

Fall greets us with a decision to make. The summer, whatever we have expected it to bring, is over. It’s tempting to witness the brilliant leaves, the tawny grasses, as beautiful as they will ever be and yet doomed to fade into the ashes of winter — and grieve. To reflect that old dreams are passing as quickly as the golden light of September and may soon be gone forever.

Even as I write, a strong breeze is tossing the boughs of the aspen above me and sending shivering leaves to the blanket spread beneath me. Time is passing. The bitter sweetness of my favorite season is reminding me that there will never be another day exactly like this one. Every moment is precious, every breath of mountain air, every beam of sunlight peeking through the trees to rest on me. And the light: the light is different in Fall. Shine light through the leaves of a yellow aspen and it becomes sacred, surpassing all things in beauty. Light is like that: “instant holiness — just add light!” The Scripture says to live in the light as Jesus is in the light. This season makes me yearn to live that way: light shining on everything around me, on all of the people in my life. Radiance pouring out of my countenance — like Moses, like Jesus. Out of my words and the deeds of my hands. No darkness in the decisions I make. No fear and no shame. And I want to take His light with me wherever I go.

So back to that decision. To grieve over fading dreams, or to hope? To weep over the passage of time, or to rejoice? Hope, like sadness, can be excruciating. And it takes guts to rejoice. But I consider this: Jesus was with me yesterday, He is with me today, and He will be with me forever. No matter the mistakes I’ve made, the time I’ve wasted, He is ever faithful. If He’s with me tomorrow, then how can tomorrow fail to be good? His very presence is enough to call it so. Such a hope is all it takes to turn today into a gift. I will smile beneath these bright leaves until every one of them has fallen. I will breathe this balmy wind until it carries all the bite of winter, and then I’ll breathe some more. I will sing in the darkness, laugh at doubt, and trust, trust, trust. Old things are passing away, and as God makes all things new, my face will not be hidden. Old dreams, new dreams – what does the age matter anyway? He is the master craftsman, the composer who makes all my puzzle pieces fit together.

I won’t forget any of this as long as I take the time to seek solitude and speak with God. I pray, listen, read His Words out loud. A thing of power breaking the stillness; yet somehow melding with it. Outdoors, creation seems to agree with the sound of the Bible being read. The wind and the rustling trees seem to get excited at the sound of His Name. I always read God’s words out loud, even if I’m reading chapters and chapters. Written Word is certainly powerful, but spoken Word has the ability to wake the dead and transform the living forever.

Somehow I must reach the place where I dream relentlessly, audaciously, regardless of the fleeting nature dreams can have. And yet never be consumed with any desire more than to simply know Jesus more deeply every day. It’s a balancing act, and I am convinced that the key to it is to recognize the plentitude of today. God, who makes rain shower upon the lands of the godly and the ungodly, who gives seed to the sower and bread to the eater, who died for us while we were still sinners, has already given us more than we can possibly conceive. Fall, however, was made for us to try; to reflect on His bounty and generous nature. This is the day of harvest. The day of His favor and love.

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” — 2 Corinthians 4:6

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” — 2 Corinthians 5:17

For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” — Romans 8:24-25

Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” — Isaiah 43:18-19

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” — 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Photo by Autumn Mott for

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