It’s all in Perspective & Purpose

I used to not like summer at all. Way too hot! The mugginess got to me, giving me headaches, and the lazy days just dragged on forever.. And all that mud in the spring was enough to stir dread of the next round, almost before the season was over… and what a way to precede summer!

Fall was pretty good; nice and cool with colourful leaves, but then boring and cold after the leaves fell. Winter seemed the perfect season. Cold, yes, but the beauty of pure white everywhere… and what’s better than looking out at all that prettiness with a cup of hot cocoa? Not to mention surfing snow drifts with a little car.. So winter was it. My favourite season.

That was all before last summer… in the days when I considered myself to be anything but a gardener. But that all changed when we did our front yard in August 2014. It was a bit of a ‘hope it looks okay mosaic piece of art’ I brainstormed even as we spent a week slaving over it. To my relief, it looked pretty good, when all was said and done. And I found myself looking forward to when the plants had taken deeper root.

This year, with time and nurturing, it’s all been stunning! I like sitting on my front porch for my morning coffee, or watch the birds steal drinks from the fountain, on a hot day, or sit on my bench. And I enjoy cool evenings, with nature alive around me…. except the misquitos… they chase me back in and I wouldn’t mind at all if they were less alive.

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In a few weeks I plan on popping in a bunch of spring-flower-bulbs I’ve never had before… And I find myself thinking about next spring and totally looking forward to it already! … and here I sit, on a beautiful fall evening, loving life, loving my garden, and loving the season….

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Life is like that… everything takes on meaning, with just a slight change in perspective. Hot days are not so hot, when there is a purpose, like growing flowers. And the hard times, when it feels like there’s mud everywhere, and we feel stuck and purposeless…. and then the flowers begin to poke out of that mud, as new life unfolds, having pushed through that dark and hopeless places… and the realization strikes that life is birthed in dark regions… and that life seems that much more glorious, in contrast.

Season by season, the awareness registers that we become stronger and more whole, with the experience of the years. Whether in committed relationship, or wisdom, or any other growth… Just like the Delphiniums grow taller and stronger, with each passing year, so we grow with trials, struggles and tragedies. Sure, sometimes the struggles knock us down–like the heavy rains and winds this summer, knocking down those electric blue flowers, breaking stems–and we feel lifeless. But like my flowers, that bounced back in full bloom this fall, our spirits are resilient, and we rise again.

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And, with time, we embrace the changing season and the up and down of life, weeping now and then when it’s hard, but mostly loving life and realizing that every experience serves a purpose. And our trust in God is strengthened with the awareness that He loves us in every season, in the rise and fall of our humanity. He is not daunted by it, neither is He swayed. He simply is. He is God. He is good. He is love.

~ T ~

© Trudy Metzger

Suddenly Life Changes, And God Just Stays the Same

Because of our Heavenly Papa’s merciful heart, we are
not utterly destroyed, His compassion is never ending.
His mercies are as fresh as the morning dawn.
“God, your faithfulness is astounding!”
Lamentations 3:22-23 (paraphrased)

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August is a month of change at our house. Big changes. Our oldest daughter, Alicia, is moving out and renting an apartment in K-W, shared with her ‘bestie’ Sue Horst. Heading into year two of Community & Criminal Justice, she decided she wants to be closer to her school. And I can’t say I blame her; time on the road is lost time when life is already full of demands.

Our second daughter, Nicole, is moving to Hamilton to start year one of Social Sciences, and living on res, sharing space with someone she has yet to meet. She plans to spend several weekends each month back home, working for Floradale Feed Mill, where she started as a co-op student several years ago.

I’m happy for them. I’m also a bit uneasy at moments, when I think about what this all means. Adjustment. Change. Change. More change. Will they live home again one day? Is this it? Our family forever changed, as we knew it for the past 13 years, since Kordan joined us, making us a family of seven? Will it be the four gentlemen and I, until they too start to venture on their own, eventually leaving us as empty nesters?

It is odd, to contemplate such a thing, but I remember how quickly it all happened at the other end of things… Nine months, one week, one day and roughly 3 hours after we said “I do”, Alicia joined us, and then seven years later we had 5 beautiful children, with two in heaven through miscarriage. So it would be naive of me to think it happens any slower at this end. In some ways, it seems already, it happens faster.

Yes, I’m happy for them. I was on my own a month before my sixteenth birthday, a troubled teen with no life experience to speak of, and somehow made it. That ‘somehow’ is the wonderful grace of God and His mercy. I’ve thought much about that this last little while as I look at the dramatic changes around the corner….

It is the goodness and mercy of my Heavenly Papa that saw me through some seriously rough times, and it what I rest in for our children. I am proud of the responsible young women they have become! And I know He has a good plan for them, and a purpose beyond what I can dream or imagine!

So I release my children to spread their wings and find their way, knowing that every now and then–no matter what life brings or where the road leads them–they will call me and tell me they are coming home… and they’ll ask me to make a specific meal… or can they do laundry here… or some practical thing that will remind me we are family, and always will be.

~ T ~

© Trudy Metzger