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Saturday, 21 September 2013

The leaves that are green turn to brown.

On "The Sounds of silence" which I would say was Simon and Garfunkel's best album

they sang a song called "the leaves that are green turn to brown." It is a song that seems to look at the passing of young life as a meaningless excercise:

I was twenty-one years when I wrote this song.
I'm twenty-two now but I won't be for long
Time hurries on.
And the leaves that are green turn to brown,
And they wither with the wind,
And they crumble in your hand.

Once my heart was filled with the love of a girl.
I held her close, but she faded in the night
Like a poem I meant to write.
And the leaves that are green turn to brown,
And they wither with the wind,
And they crumble in your hand.

I threw a pebble in a brook
And watched the ripples run away
And they never made a sound.
And the leaves that are green turned to brown,
And they wither with the wind,
And they crumble in your hand.

Hello, Hello, Hello, Hello,
Good-bye, Good-bye, Good-bye, Good-bye,
That's all there is.
And the leaves that are green turned to brown.

It seems that Paul Simon who wrote the song is saying something of what King Solomon said as he wrote the book of the Old Testament that we know as Ecclesiates. To Solomon as he looked at life from an earthly perspective everything was meaningless, life and experience was just "a blowing in the wind!" (To quote Bob Dylan also.) But why the pessimism?

This weekend we go through the Autumn equinox where we leave this fantastic summer behind and move into Autumn proper. I know the weather forecasters have been telling us that Autumn started 3 weeks ago but they are just plain wrong! The seasons are ordered by the Lord and not scince or the media.

We are about to move into the Autumn of 2013. That is historic in itself. There will only ever be one of them. It is unique, the events that will happen are for this time alone and so why not enter into this autumn with eager anticipation? Let us look forward to the benefits that it will bring.

I have my camera at the ready for the colourful pictures of leaves that are still a kind of green turning to brown. The inbetween colurs of the red end of the spectrum are so spectacular that snaps of the process are best sellers in books, magazines, paintings etc. Then there are all of the berries that feed the birds, wild animals and us so readily. I am told to look forward to a bumper harvest of cob nuts and blackberries.

The fields are "white and ready for harvest" the grain is being "safely gathered in!" This is the time of great productivity, the harvest of hard working farmers, gardeners and allotment holders. It is a great season of provision and yet we seem to have this almost negative view of it.

I wonder: "why?"

I suppose beyond autumn comes winter, but why the negativity towards winter which is simply a time of rest for "mother nature?" A time when the old dies away and life awaits the resurrection of spring. Solomon along with others throughout history have seen all of this as a meaningless process but if we were more honest it is really what the rest of the year is all about. Without autumn there would be no harvest and no provision for the days to come. Autumn is therefore vital for our future, let us celebrate it this year and rejoice that by His good grace God has once again brought us to the time of peovision.

I guess that you might not be too surprised that in all of this I see something of a bigger picture that applies to us.

Moders society seems to be obsessed with the spring time of human life. Youth is all that seems to be of any great importance. Wherever we are we are bombarded with youthful fashion, music and influence and yet the largest people grouping in our society are in the autumn of our lives. It is this group that are producing the blessings for the continuation of humanity. They have produced their family and paid into the "coffers" of the land and are awaiting their winter transformation and yet along with winter there is no real concern for what they are.

We should be celebrating our middle to older aged folks. They have brought our society to where it is today. Some of thet is corrupted just like the apple with blight but there is much great fruit from their lives that will be of great benefit for the future of mankind. There are millions of them (and of course I am one of them!) who are stepping from the summer of life into our autumn. We are becoming craggy and wrinkled, the energy levels are diminishing but to God we are beautiful (if we belong to Him!) and He looks down on what we are as a great harvest that is being safely gathered in.

How do we belong? That is a simple question to answer because the bible tells me the answer. There is only one way to please God and that is by faith and trust in His Son, Jesus Christ who died sacrificially a sinners death on behalf of all who will by repentance trust in Him for the forgiveness of sins. We then begin to produce fruit that God supplies through us that is for the benefit of God's people (the church) and for the wider public.

Just as God provides a great harvest for all of nature to benefit from, so also does He provide blessing for all people through His church. We live in the autumn period of history where there is a great harvest of men, women, girls and boys being gathered into the store houses of God Almighty for time and eternity.

Let us not despise autummn it is God's time of provision in nature which ought to point us to the greater autumn which is God's harvest field.

The question left is: Are you a part of God's harvest? If you want to know more why not contact me through the channels already provided on this blog and I will point you to the the Great Harvester of the soul.


Gary said...

Good morning Pete,
The opening few line of that S&G song are not dissimilar to Kirsty MacColls 'New England'. We watched an episode of the Andy Williams SHow the other night where he sang 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' with them, and just Paul on the guitar....beautiful! Although the autumn for me means leaves, leaves and more leaves, I still try to see the beauty in the golds and reds, and really do look forward to the time that gardens finally sigh and rest for a while. As for being craggy and wrinkled, you may be right. I walked past a Dunn & Co window the other day and thought....hmmm...nice cardy.
Have a good week Pete, love to all.

Peter Thatcher said...

I bought an Andy Wiliams cd (triple!) for £3. Thoroughly enjoyed listening on my way to Malvern Sat. night event the Christmas cd was good!
I suppose Autumn leaves are the harvest of your years horticultural labours. If you had not been so proficient you would be sawing up logs and not sweeping up leaves. Oh well roll on the next growing season.
Enjoy the cardy but dont forget the slippers and pipe.
Speak to you soon.