Every year around this time, when the gold and red and brown leaves begin to sing, I hear an invitation: Come with me by yourself, to a quiet place and get some rest. These are the words Jesus spoke to his disciples after they spent a long season of serving food to hungry people, teaching them about the kingdom of heaven, meeting their needs, and healing their broken lives.
When I pause and savor the beauty of autumn, I usually begin humming the song Appalachian Melody, written by the late Mark Herd.
If you ran through the summer, on a mad dash of work and service; spending your energy meeting the needs of others, trying to make things that are wrong in the world go right, organizing people, striving for justice, chasing after a grand vision God planted in your heart, it may be time to pause and rest. Let the music of the autumn leaves invite you into a quite place. The beauty of creation will sing a song of restoration. Listen to the music with your eyes and let God’s rhythm of grace restore your soul.
Larry Stoess is an author, public speaker, and urban church planter. He loves telling stories about how dreaming with God will empower people to make old and broken things new again. Larry and a band of friends founded the Church of the Promise in Louisville's Portland neighborhood; The Table, a pay-what-you-can community café; and Promise Housing Plus, a non-profit construction company. He has written about their experience of dreaming with God in his new book: Think Red.