Autumn Glory: 8 Ways to Focus on God this Fall

He changes times and seasons – Daniel 2:21 NIV

photo credit: Ian Sane via photopin cc

photo credit: Ian Sane via photopin cc

I love autumn. It’s my favorite time of year. Growing up in Central New York, I had the privilege of witnessing wide open landscapes of blazing orange, yellow, and red leaves that filled your senses with splendor. Chilly nights, lakeside bonfires, and warm apple fritters heralded in the beginning of a long slow slumber through winter.

These days I live in San Diego, where only a handful of trees dare defy the tropical status quo, by trading their suits of green for ones of gold and crimson.

Yet even here, where seasons whisper through their change, autumn speaks a little louder than all the rest. Perhaps that’s why I like it so much.

Many view autumn as a time to slow down and settle in – home and hearth are calling. So I thought we’d take some time to focus on the Master of the season. Using a few of my favorite reminders of fall, I’ve come up with some ways to draw closer to the Lord this time of year.


1. Let go.
In preparation for harsh winter weather, a tree will shed its leaves to conserve energy and protect itself from damage. Now is a great time to look at what excesses we might shed as well. Letting go of obligations, commitments, or even relationships that sap our strength, will allow God to come into our lives and renew our spirit.


2. Bundle up.
As a child, I would defy my mother’s wisdom to dress for the cooler weather. In my mind, I was impervious to the threats of rain and cold. But the threat always caught up to me, and I’d have to listen to my mom’s “I told you so’s” while I laid sick in bed. God offers us the full armor of Christ to protect us from the threats of the spiritual realms where our real war rages. May we not think ourselves too immune to these threats, and forget to dress appropriately for life.


3. Feed your soul.
There’s nothing like feasting on comfort foods this time of year. Pie, chili, and savory soups are welcome visitors at our table. But this food is temporary, and only satisfies our physical needs. The Word of God is bread for the soul, and when we make an effort to partake daily of its richness, we will experience a satisfaction with eternal benefits.


4. Set your light out for all to see.
The soft glow of candlelight in the early darkening hours makes a home feel cozy. There’s a sense of drawing in to what’s comfortable and familiar, and blocking out the outside world. Yet God calls us to let the light he put in us shine before others (Matthew 5:16). Perhaps you feel as if your light is too dim to be of any use. Then I encourage you to ask him to magnify your light today, and give you courage to glow for his glory.


photo: Raye Wortel

photo: Raye Wortel

5. Sweeten the words of your lips.
In my world, a day isn’t done until it’s topped off with a bite of chocolate. But lately I’ve been thinking I have this notion backwards. I end my day taking in sweetness, when I should start my day dispensing it. I Peter 3:10 reminds us that if we love life and want to see good days, we must be mindful to have our lips speak truth and sweetness.


6. Color your life with whatever is lovely, praiseworthy…
It’s easy to go through our days as if life runs on old black and white film – each moment spewing just another shade of gray. When our mind focuses on gray living, it’s hard to find joy. Autumn if filled with magnificent color! Let’s take a cue from God’s rendering of the season, and paint our thought life with whatever is lovely, true, and praiseworthy.


7. Pile on prayer.
It was my job to rake leaves that fell from the towering oaks in the backyard of my childhood home. Every year, I pulled thousands of leaves into waist-high piles throughout the yard so they could be bagged and put at the curb. Now, the image of those autumn days, and giant leaf piles remind me of prayer. What if each leaf represented a prayer? What if each mound was a monument of praise, thanksgiving, and petition to God? And what if we jumped into those mountains of prayer, tossed each one to the sky, and rolled in the certainty that they’re in the most perfect hands ever?


8. Stoke the fires of refinement.
My favorite memories of autumn are the bonfires we had on Onieda Lake. We would huddle in our chairs around the roaring flames, and watch them dance for hours. Someone – usually my husband, would stoke the fire to keep it burning hot. When it comes to facing God’s refinement, we would rather walk through warm water than a roaring fire. But He doesn’t take us through the heat to harm, but to teach us to call on his name, so he can respond, “These are my people.” (Zechariah 13:9)


I hope you enjoyed reading this today, thank you for taking the time.


What are your favorite memories of fall? How do you focus on God during this season?

One Reply

  1. I love this post Rene! Autum is my favorite time of year, too, and it’s beautiful here in Michigan. Great points & parallels to our faith & this season. Blessings!

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