I don’t know if fall has ever made itself so known so fast. But make no mistake about it, I am here for it.

I mean, just look…

photo by McCabe Coats

It’s so beautiful. We love the changing leaves. People literally travel to specific areas to see the fall leaves.

And the most wild thing to me is… the leaves are dying.

This makes me almost want to laugh out loud.

The leaves are actually healthiest when they’re green – but we don’t notice them much then. We notice them when they are on their way to dying and falling off, to be swept up in a pile and put out with the garbage.

But the wonderful thing is that it’s a part of the process.

We kind of hate that word, right?

Maybe because it’s been overused, maybe because of the open-ended journey that it implies.

Our view of whatever we’re walking through is so narrow. It’s short-sighted. There’s no way around it. You physically cannot see the bigger picture when you’re smack dab in the center of the picture.

But I’m convinced that what makes the process so hard isn’t always the circumstance itself; it’s the desperate desire to get to the end.

We want to know how this particular story will end. Will it be worth it? Who will I turn out to be? Will my relationships stay in tact? How will God answer my prayers? When will the pain of it all end?

My life transformed when I stopped fighting the process and actually trusted God. I quit wrestling the process of time; the refining and the pruning. The uncomfy stretching and digging and uncertainty. The more I accept those things as normal and actually healthy and a part of my growth, the more peace and hope I have. True peace and contentment doesn’t come from unshaken circumstances. If you’ve lived through any of it long enough, you know this to be true. Peace is a Person and contentment is an inner, foundational choice. In the end, we have to stop fighting God and fighting ourselves.

“Stop fighting. You may be fighting against God – who He’s trying to be to you, and what He’s trying to do in you. But you’re also fighting yourself. Aren’t you tired? I know it makes me so tired. I tire of the spinning wheel that never seems to slow down. The world spins and taunts me to keep up. To balance it all and give myself the credit. But the world never has your best interest at heart. The ways of the world are simply lies that a mass of people have believed, coming from the enemy of our soul. He’s running out of time, he’s desperate; he’s made people believe they have to be desperate, too. Let it be said of us that we are desperate for one thing: more of God. To be more like Him, to have more of Him.

Let’s stop fighting. Let’s accept the time, the pressing, and the process that it must take in order for us to need God and allow Him to do His work in us.”

Backwards, Chapter 2

What would this look like in your life?

Maybe it would look a little bit like the change of the seasons. There’s a time for growth, and a time for colors to burn bright. There’s a time to shed the old and a specific time for quiet and bare branches. And in the release, the exposed, the raw, there is hope for new growth again.

But we have to stop fighting it. Nothing was ever meant to grow without somehow cutting back along the way. Even you.

What are you pushing against right now? If we’re really honest with ourselves, it’s not the pain or the questions. It’s the belief in the lie that it shouldn’t be this way. That we must have done something wrong. That God must not really be good or real or loving. The problem isn’t always in our unanswered questions or need to know the ending. It’s our skewed perception of process. I’m telling you – everything can change if we accept process as not only necessary, but maybe even good.

Jesus is very present with you, right now, in the middle. Not just when you turn out okay in the end.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” [Ecclesiastes 3:1]

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