DON”T LEAF ME ALONE!
As I was driving through the “burbs” of Chicago the other day, I was struck by the gorgeous, beautiful, and startling colors that had “suddenly” appeared on the beautiful trees around me. The leaves were already starting their Technicolor production of God’s Fall beauty right before my bulging eyes. I had never really been struck with that kind of an “awe” feeling from leaves in all of my 79 1/6 years of life!
Talk about “stopping to smell the roses”, I have to admit that I usually don’t even see the roses, let alone smell them! My mind took me even further on this new adventure by starting to compare the beauty of the multi-color leaves to …what else …the aging of people! Although all comparisons can only go so far, I thought of the general inconsistency of our culture, which, on one hand, marvel and ooh and ahh at the beautiful aging process of the Fall leaves, yet are often blind to the beautiful gift that older adults bring to our neighborhood as well.
Other comparisons might also be made in terms of how society deals with the aging person as well as the aging leaves, especially after they/we lose our beauty and gifts of brightening up our neighborhoods and world. Someone has to “take care of” and , pardon the expression, get rid of, those once beautiful gifts that are now heaped all over our yards, needing to be raked, and disposed of in some way. They become a bother, a chore, another thing to do.
“AH-HA” Moments happen when we older adults can see and sense both the younger and the older affirm that our society is slowly coming to the conclusion that we can’t just “Leaf us alone”. Rather it is time to accept aging as a gift from the Lord, from the time life begins as a little bud until the time we reach our full colors of life in Heaven!
I encourage us all to continue to be awed, both by the beauty of the aging leaves as well as by the beauty of the aging people around us. They continue to share and shine their golden glows and gifts to the younger and the older who live and die around them.
“Leaf them alone?” No way! Talk to them, encourage them, engage them to show their colors, remind them of their beauty, as you drive through the colorful leaves in your neighbor and also as you visit and support those golden aged people in your own home, church, and community. What beautiful sights to behold, indeed!