he English language is interesting in that a single word can have multiple meanings. I’m sure it isn’t unique in that way, but I haven’t studied any other languages. So, I cannot comment on French or Hebrew or Pashtu.
Take the word fall for example. I might say, “Don’t fall for that Ponzi scheme,” meaning “Don’t be taken in by it.” I might say, “Be careful so you don’t fall on the icy steps,” meaning to keep you from face planting and injuring yourself. Or I might say, “Fall is my favorite season of the year.” Any one of these is the correct use of the word in context.
If I tell you that as a Christian you should “fall,” you might, reasonably, wonder what type of fall I mean. I think we should do all three.
First, I would definitely encourage us to “fall for” what God is selling us – that is, eternal life in peace and harmony. Along the way toward that amazing, eternal life, He is offering unconditional love, unmerited forgiveness, the Holy Spirit (a piece of Himself), 24/7/365 access to His throne, peace in the midst of an angry world, rest for our weary bones, and so much more. Buy it. It is real. This is no shell game, so bet everything you have on it. Invest in it on a day-to-day basis with prayer and study and obedience. And this is available for everyone.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. Hebrews 10:23 Let us hold fast the profession of [our] faith without wavering; (for he [is] faithful that promised;) and 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Second, let go and fall headlong into His arms. When the world hands you death, pain, frustration and loss, do a trust fall into God’s waiting lap. Cry to Him. Trust in Him. Let go of what you cannot control. He has your back. He will never fail to catch you. See Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Finally, be like the season of fall. We don’t have much of a fall here in East Texas where I live. We have mostly evergreen trees and the few deciduous trees that we have don’t benefit from the right conditions for the kind of brilliance that you get in the northeast and northwest parts of this country. But I do occasionally get to be in these areas during fall and the colors just take my breath away.
Fall reminds me of that song, “Live Like You Were Dying” (Tim McGraw, 2009*). From the moment we are born our fleshly bodies are on the way back to the dust from which man was created. No, I don’t recommend sky diving or riding a bull named Fu Manchu. However, when we face the fact that there is no way to cheat physical death, we can then ask ourselves, “So, how do I want to go out?” Do I want to wither away like the pine needles in East Texas and fall quietly to the ground? Or do I want to go out in a blaze of brilliance like a maple tree in New Hampshire?
Don’t sky dive, but take the risk of talking to your co-workers about Jesus (much scarier in its own way). Talk sweeter. Don’t ride a bull, but reach out with forgiveness to those who have done you wrong. Give forgiveness you’ve been denying. Extend love and help to the dirty, hungry masses, even if you think they have made bad choices that put them there. Love deeper.
Let’s follow the credo of 2Co 12:15 And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you… Let’s spend all our resources (time, money, thoughts) and ultimately be spent for the Gospel.
Oh, what a spectacle each of us can create if we are willing to go out with a blaze of glory and give it all for the Kingdom.
When it comes to the seasons, winter may be about resting up for renewal, spring may be about renewal and summer may be about “making hay while the sun shines.” But, fall is about giving all you have to create breath-taking brilliance on your way out.
Let’s go out with a kaleidoscope of brilliance. Come on, let’s fall y’all!
I’d love to hear your thoughts too. You can write me at Nancy@DynamicChristianMinistries.org
*Songwriters: CRAIG MICHAEL WISEMAN, JAMES TIMOTHY NICHOLS, TIM NICHOLS
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