The leaves change, the weather turns, and I find that I don’t feel ready for the summer season to end! And after the winter storm we just weathered, it's definitely over!
But here it is, we celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving today, (yes it’s a month earlier than our neighbours to the south). Our cooler climate brings our harvest to an earlier end and thus we begin our time of celebrating all that God has blessed us with.
I think if we’re honest, this year's harvest season has been a struggle for our community. Inches of rain, day after day have made it a real challenge, not to mention the feet of snow covering the fields; there are a lot of discouraged farmers out there.
Yet, we remember that our offerings of gratitude and praise to the Faithful One, are not dependant on what He gives us, but on His grace and faithfulness to us in spite of our circumstances.
That truth has been a resounding theme in my life.
As I’ve been reflecting and compiling gratitudes for the season upon us, I remembered that it is for me to remember:
-That “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above” (James 1:17) and not from my own hand.
-That Grace saves me, “not by works so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:9)
-That I am free to “rejoice in the Lord always.” (Philippians 4:4)
With that in mind, here are some things I'm thankful for this fall season:
1. Garden Produce
There has been a lot of canning to do! Crushed tomatoes and salsa got thrown into jars and sealed, for the delicious moments throughout the year to enjoy them. It’s not always a great gardening year, and not all my stuff did great, but the tomatoes really did well, so I’m glad :)
I have a lot of fun watching my kids play sports. Fall is our soccer season, but only lasts for a few weeks since it starts to get too cold outside. We were rained out a few times, but they had so much fun playing together with everyone. We’ve also started our hockey season now, and we are so grateful to enjoy meeting new families.
3. New Beginnings
The kiddos are 8, 5 and 3 now. I've had the moment where I realize how fast time is really going by, when it seems like they were just babies in my arms!
New school grades means new workbooks and new things to learn. I get to enjoy time together at the table with the kiddos, learning alongside them and sharing life together.
4. Old Routines
The familiar rhythms of Awana, Sunday school, and bible study are comforting and uplifting. Having a summer break can open up time for us to spend time together differently as a family, but these habits bring us life, excitement and discipline. So it’s been a lot of fun getting back into these old routines.
5. Testimony & Legacy
It’s been a hard season the last while, at work, with some really difficult circumstances. Through this time I’m learning, once again, the power of testimony, the strength in community, and God’s glory emanating, even in the tough times. It’s trusting God’s sovereignty. It’s recalling the legacy of a life that has impacted so many around us.
6. Our Health
It’s been a wonderful 6 months since we’ve last seen Samara’s transplant doctor. She’s been healthy and doing well - as we all have been - and it's truly amazing! It’s almost reaching the point where I don’t think about her transplant that often, and as monumental as that time was for her and our family, it’s becoming more and more a piece of our past, and not our present. I’m grateful for the journey and all that we’ve learned.
After the fall comes winter (obviously). Canning our vegetables, purchasing new snowboots, starting Vitamin D supplements, and putting on the snow tires are tasks we do to prepare for it, even though we (I) may not feel excited about it.
But I remind myself of the reasons to rejoice in each new day, because He has sustained me through the night, woken me for a new day and I will commit to rejoice and be glad in it!
"Give thanks to the Lord for His love endures forever." (Psalm 106:1)
What are you thankful for this fall season?