Bruce Springsteen is 67, and Bonnie Raitt will soon be. Eric Clapton is 71; so are Van Morrison and Steve Martin. Lucinda Williams is 63. David Letterman and Emmylou Harris are 69.
Some of my students at Mars Hill University have grandparents who are younger than these entertainers who’ve been so much a part of my life. More than a few of my students have grandparents younger than I.
Until a few years ago, it was rare for me to go anywhere near a medical office. I had no accidental cuts that needed stitching or broken bones that needed resetting or infections that needed treating.
I had surgery twice on a football-injured ankle in my late teens and no surgery since.
I think I went nearly two decades without filing a single insurance claim.
In the last thirty days, I’ve been to the cardiologist’s office twice and the Cancer Center three times. The pharmacists at my local Walgreens know my name.
I take ibuprofen both before and after I play racquetball.
It’s not so much age that’s on my mind just now as stage—not years but seasons.
I’m living in autumn.
Depending on the course and speed of Multiple Myeloma, I could actually be in winter—late winter. I don’t know.
It feels like autumn, both in these gorgeous western North Carolina mountains and in my heart: invigorating crisp air and breathtaking bursts of beauty as nature goes dormant.
In his poem, “Autumn,” Rainer Maria Rilke wrote: “leaves are falling, falling as from far off, as though far gardens withered in the skies.” Even the “heavy earth is falling from all the stars down into loneliness.” In fact, he said, “we are all falling.” “And yet”:
And yet there is One who holds this falling
endlessly gently in his hands.
All this falling: falling down, falling behind, and falling short. But there is the holding and the Holding One.
I live in the paradox of falling and being held and in the wonders which flame-out before everything burns away.
The gifts of this season are the slow healing of brokenness (which is not the same as curing), the regathering and reintegration of what was scattered and lost, and the hope which rises, against reason, in all the falling.
And, Van Morrison just released a new album: “Keep me Singing.” The old guy still can.
Thanks so much Guy for your beautiful moving testimony and devotional today—we love and miss you and Anita and the kids. Our continued prayers for you and all.
Cindy & Sky
So good to hear from you, Cindy and Sky. We miss and love you, too.
Another spiritually-spun, elegantly-written gem from one who knows. And remember — there’s the "falling in love" with the One who holds us. Thank you, Guy, for all your reminders to me.
Thank you, Phyllis, especially for the prompt to remember that "falling in love" with God is the "falling" which redeems all the others.
Thanks always for sharing your thoughts. They’re a blessing!
Please, Holding One, hold and protect this Poet of life and nature and spirit, Guy.
Thank you, Emily, for that beautiful prayer. It means a great deal to me.
Wonderfully, beautifully written!
Thanks so much, Don.
Guy, could we also look at Autumn as something more than just fall and coming to an end? This season is also a time in nature and human life for change, rest, reflection, repurpose. Our wonderful Creator has provided us with a time to pause, along with nature, and prepare for the next season which may be earthly or eternal.
Sandra, it’s a great gift, isn’t it?, that falling becomes rising and that dying becomes living.
Your words are always a blessing. I look forward to many more.
Thank you, Sally!
I am always so deeply moved by the prose you write, Guy. Autumn holds such beauty while also signifying that a cycle is near its end. Thank you for your faithfulness to our Father and for allowing us the privilege of drawing closer to Him through your words and the witness of your life.
Mary, your affirmation and encouragement mean so much to me. Thank you!