Fall may have technically started on September 23, but in my book, fall officially starts in October. Anybody with me? October 1st gives us the “go” to start wearing boots, cozy sweaters and placing pumpkins on our front porches. Starting fall much earlier is like playing Christmas music before Thanksgiving.
When I think about fall – when the temperatures start to cool off (it’s finally in the 80s here in Texas!) and the trees begin to change – I am reminded of Isaiah 40:8 which says, “The grass withers and the flowers fall but the Word of our God endures forever.” (NIV)
Nothing on earth is permanent. Just as the seasons come and go, our possessions, our wealth, and our social status will all wither away. In fact, change is one of the few constants.
In Ecclesiastes 1:11, Solomon says, “There is no remembrance of men of old, and even those who are yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow.” (NIV)
The truth is, just like the leaves wither as fall ends and winter arrives, we will perish one day as well. We will not be remembered by those who come after us, just as we don’t remember those who lived hundreds of years prior to our time on earth. The cycle is never over. Things don’t last forever, and neither do our earthly lives.
James 1:11 discusses the futility of chasing money.
“For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.” James 1:11 (NIV)
If we are chasing after earthly things, it will only lead to temporary pleasure and long-term disappointment.
While on earth, the world is changing rapidly around us. The theories of the day, the latest fad or fashion statement, even the views of politicians are “evolving” to fit the cultural climate. For example, the cultural view of gay marriage has drastically changed over the past few years. Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act, for goodness sakes! Marriage used to be an issue we all agreed upon, but the shift in cultural values has now forced it to be a topic of debate. As another example, imagine a world without Facebook. Love it or hate it, our cultural climate has been irrevocably changed by social media.
Undoubtedly, change can at times be hard, but sometimes it can be a good thing. Sometimes a little change is good for people in general, because it’s easy to get stuck in a rut in life (thank goodness for the change in seasons!).
The church cannot be afraid of change either. Someone once said, “The last words of a dying church are, “Well, we’ve always done it this way.” Friends, if we are unwilling to change the style of music, the color of the carpet or the outreach activities to reach the lost because “we’ve always done in this way,” we are focused on the wrong things. We are called to adapt to suite and accommodate culture, but we must be careful not to adapt in a way that changes God’s message. We have to keep the unchanging truth of God’s Word central.
I’ve heard many people say, “The only thing that never changes is change.” I agree with this statement to a point and I understand the meaning behind it. Things in our earthly lives come and go, but let us not forget about the unchanging nature of our Heavenly Father. There are only three things that are permanent; God, His Word, and the souls of men and women. They will never change and they exist forever.
This is great news for a believer because we know that the promises God has made us in His Word are just as true today as they were when they were written down – and they will never change! God promised Israel He would send them a Messiah and a deliverer and then kept His promise by sending His only Son, Jesus to die on a cross. We can count on God to do what He has said He is going to do.
I don’t know about you, but I am excited for change from 100 degree temperatures. Roasting marshmallows by a fire doesn’t sound half bad (and neither does kissing my husband underneath a beautiful yellow tree).
Oh, and if you are one of those who listens to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, I suppose a little bit of premature Santa won’t hurt anyone either.