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“That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”
Ephesians 3:17-19

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Autumn is a time of change, the most obvious of which of course, is the foliage. During the years that I lived in Florida, I grievously missed watching the leaves change color in the fall. In the years since we’ve been in Georgia, I impatiently peer out my window and anxiously await the shorter days, the crisper temperatures, the pungent, spicy aroma of the woods, and the feast for the eyes as the verdant green leaves wave farewell to summer and cloak themselves in the vivid hues of autumn.

The turning of the calendar pages brings with it other seasonal changes—sweaters and jeans replace t-shirts and capris. The fireplace stands waiting for that first chilly evening, ready to cast its warm glow over the living room. I smile in anticipation of that first steaming mug of hot cider or hot chocolate.

Autumn brought another change this year. Every year, I journey to a special place in the north Georgia mountains. It’s a roadside scenic overlook that I visited five years ago with my son while he was undergoing cancer treatment. That day has become such a sweet memory for me, I return to that place every year and celebrate the life of my son, and thank God for the twenty-eight years He loaned Jonathan to us. My husband and I call the day “Sweet November”.

Last year, I was so disappointed when I pulled into that scenic overlook. The fence was broken down in several places, the weeds had taken over, the grass hadn’t seen a mower in months, there was trash strewn everywhere, and graffiti marred the lone bench. It broke my heart to see this special place so neglected. When I got home, I wrote a letter to the state agency whose responsibility it is to oversee the maintenance of the place. I included photos I’d taken, and I explained why this place is so special to me.

This year, as the time was nearing for me to make my annual Sweet November drive to the mountains, trepidation filled me. If the place looked so bad last year, how much worse would it be this year? Would it be closed down altogether? I asked God to prepare my heart in case my worst fears were realized. As I drove around the bend in the road and pulled into the parking area, tears filled my eyes—not because the place was unkempt or closed, but because it was beautiful.

The fence had been repaired and rebuilt, weeds were cut down, the grass was mowed, trash was picked up, and two new benches offered a place to sit and enjoy the mountain view. The golds, scarlets, and oranges dappled the mountainside with a patchwork of color—a tapestry background for the mercydrop God had prepared for me. How sweet to stand there and lift my hands in worship, thanking God for the change that had taken place.

When God came into my life forty-four years ago, He made a change. He cut away the weeds of self-sufficiency, repaired and adjusted the parameters in my life establishing Himself at the focal point. He cleaned away the trash and turned me around to show me the view from the mountaintop. Over the years, changes too numerous to count have come my way. Some of them have been joyous. Others have been painful. Some happened without warning. Others seemed to take forever to manifest. All have helped me grow.

When God comes in and changes a person’s heart, He isn’t finished. God will continue to orchestrate changes in His child’s life, stretching and tuning and molding that person, cutting back the weeds and renewing the beauty. It’s sweet to know that God will never leave me alone, but instead allow changes to reflect His goodness and mercy.

Thanks for letting me share my heart.