What do these trees teach me today? That God is in charge, that it's OK to let go and that acting as if God were not in charge or that it's not OK to let go would be unnatural. How appropriate these teachings are for our ministry at the Passaic Neighborhood Center for Women!
- God is in charge: There is no way to sustain this ministry without the day-to-day, minute-to minute realization that, in doing this work, we are instruments of God. We might weather unseasonable highs and lows, joys and sorrows, births and deaths, healing and illness -- and God is in all of it!
- It's OK to let go: As much as we want to enjoy the flaming yellow leaves a bit longer, we are reminded that God's ways are not our ways and God's time is not our time -- and thank God for that! The only way that new growth can occur in spring is for leaves to fall in autumn. Secure in the knowledge that it's OK, we let go of those things that hinder us from personal and communal growth -- the regrets, resentments, stubbornness and arrogance -- and we cling to the hope that new life will emerge from this detachment.
- Acting otherwise would be unnatural: There would be something very wrong with a tree that is meant to shed its leaves in the fall failing to do so. Similarly, attempting to play God or falsely convincing ourselves that attachment is healthy is counterproductive to growth. We might wish that it were otherwise, but it just wouldn't be natural!