In the Pacific Northwestern United States there are four distinct seasons, two with incredible contrasting “glory”, that is, presence—summer and winter. It strikes me as something to behold because it is new to me that the marked difference is not hot and cold as I have been accustomed to in the Midwest, but rather dry and wet.
This year from the late Spring and throughout Summer to early Fall we relished long light-filled days and rocky shores along the river that flows through our backyard, then slowly the days have begun to have a heavier, fuller, presence.
The rains that mark this particularly glorious second season have begun with the rare roll of thunder and crack of lightning (that we may not hear again until Spring as a marking of the nearly continual rains then soon-to-come decline). And so it began, the next morning we woke and found our rocky shore covered with the swollen rushing waters of the river and visited once again by the mist that hovers over the river in the evenings and does not leave again until midmorning, most days—some days it simply stays.
I have been imagining to myself that if we lived within the larger cities nearby and were detached from the myriad nuances involved in this shifting of the seasons, if we were more saturated in only the grey of the sky meeting the grey of the concrete, this would all feel significantly different.
But for now, abiding in a rural haven, we daily watch the grass, the moss, and the particularly wide spread sword ferns all returning to their deepest green carpeting of this place we get to call home. All the while, the leave’s gold and fire embers hang down in contrast to the abundant evergreens like jewels.
I dare to try to communicate all of this wonder because I imagine these colors and mist laden days could cause to rise a familiar song within us and beyond us all. We, not any of us, are a stranger to the changes occurring within or around us, yet often we struggle to find or feel a belonging to them.
To let change embrace us could mean to let seeds of faith, hope, and love to sprout within us, it could mean to believe more everyday that it is in God that we live and move and breathe, and on the days that we don’t believe, it could grow in us a greater willingness to pray for help.
“There is a loneliness in us that hears. When the soul parts from the company of the ego and its retinue of petty conceits; when we cease to exploit all things but instead pray the world’s cry, the world’s sigh, our loneliness may hear the living grace beyond all power.
We must first peer into the darkness, feel strangled and entombed in the hopelessness of living without God, before we are ready to feel the presence of His living light.” –God in Search of Man pg.140, Abraham Joshua Heschel
It is said of the woman of valor in Proverbs 31 that, “She rises while it is still night…” this was part of her glory, her presence as a light bearer and life giver to her household. Is this not that the invitation to our generation? A beckoning not to rely on old glory, not to wear thin in search of new glory, but rather a call to rise while it is still night, still dark, in faith, hope, and love of the faithfully renewed day—an ancient glory.
A woman in labor with child often rises in the night, sometimes wrestling with herself, sometimes with the darkness, the unknown, the un-good, but always to send out her light. On the eve of change, it may seem auspicious or it may seem ordinary—this is not the important part. Life is on the horizon and wisdom is there calling out:
“Blessed is the one who listens to me,
watching daily at my gates,
waiting beside my doors.” -Wisdom, Proverbs 8:34
The birthing one, whether a stranger to the changes occurring within or around, whether struggling to find or feel a belonging to them—she has a choice to make. She can let change embrace her, let the seeds of faith, hope, and love to form strength within her, she could believe that it is in God that she lives and moves and breathes, and in that moment that she doesn’t believe, she could cry out in return, “For with You is the fountain of life; in Your light do we see light.” (Psalm 36:9) “Help my unbelief!”
Would that not be glory? Would that not be truth in the hidden places? Would that not be bending at the feet of Jesus? Would that not be God with us?
Hello kindreds! Thank you for reading my offering, my own birthing of hope in the Ancient One. If this writing stirs truth within you would you consider sharing it with someone else? I’m grateful you are here. If it feels like a place to grow then please stay awhile and subscribe, I’ll send you one of my poems to extend a warm welcome. To have a further companionship in prayer, check out my book here.
“We must not wait passively for insights. In the darkest moments we must try to let our inner light go forth. ‘And she rises while it is yet night.'(Proverbs 31:15)” -God in Search of Man, pg. 143
All photos copyright Raynna Myers 2018