Friday, November 4, 2016

The Season of Change

Every autumn leaf peepers travel to New England to see the changing colors of the trees.  Although I’ve never had the opportunity to join that pilgrimage, I believe the fall colors of eastern Tennessee could give those Yankee trees some serious competition. 

This week we’ve been in Vonore, TN for maintenance work on the Dawntreader.  While we waited for all the items on Tim’s list of concerns to be addressed, 

I paid a visit to my friend Julie.

and another visit to Smok'N Bonz, a local barbecue place we'd first discovered last fall which has raised the bar for all the barbecue restaurants we've ever tried.

However, it was the fall colors that lured us to the hiking trails in Fort Loudoun State Park and in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. 

Jakes Creek in the Great Smoky Mountains

More than any other time of the year, to me, fall is the season of change.  Change is not a state of being that I embrace.  This first year of life on the road has challenged my comfort zone.  As we’ve moved from one campground to the next, I've figuratively held my breath until the Dawntreader is safely moored once more.  And while I've enjoyed the comradery of other Care-A-Vanners on the Habitat for Humanity builds we've participated in, I've missed being a part of a close-knit community of friends.  Still, this chance to travel has opened up new vistas to admire like these of eastern Tennessee.  

Poets express the beauty of this season much better than I ever could. 

"Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile."  ~ William Cullen Bryant

"The one red leaf, the last of its clan, That dances as often as dance it can, Hanging so light and hanging so high, On the topmost twig that looks up at the sky." ~  Samuel Taylor Coleridge

"Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree." ~ Emily Bronte

"How beautifully leaves grow old.  How full of light and color are their last days." ~ John Burroughs

But there is One who never changes.  He is always with me no matter where I am; no matter the season of my life.  As it says in Psalm 90:1-2,  “Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations.  Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God."

From the shifting chaos of life, God forms beauty out of change.  A favorite hymn of mine, written by Henry Francis Lyte two months before he died, is Abide With Me.  Its second verse is a testament about the presence of God in our lives regardless of the changes that threaten to overwhelm us.

Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim;
its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

No matter the season, the location or the circumstances of my life, I'm grateful that the Lord abides with me.


  1. Thanks for sharing the beautiful fall photos. While I am not usually a fan of change either, I do like witnessing the beauty of the changing seasons.

  2. I love the Fall foliage while on a drive through the Kentucky backroads. But once those beauties fall from the trees onto my yard, the battle begins until they are completely mulched into thousands of indistinguishable pieces! The circle of life ;)