Living in the south, you see signs this time of year that say “It’s Fall Y’all“. I love it. I love fall with its fat, orange pumpkins everywhere…they just yell “HAPPY” to me. Football, chili in the crockpot, warm orange sunsets that seem to match the hues of the maple leaves, along with the reds and golds of the apples and the fields. I get my oven warmed up, and get my “bake” on. It’s one of the things I hope to tell God I liked best of His ideas on this earth. Autumn.
We can liken fall to what is happening liturgically in the church readings as well. Like the quickly dimming sun of October days, the church winds us down spiritually into a greater perspective of the end days.
Here is what resonates with me as I examine the autumn of my spiritual life this year:
Setting Back the Clock: I need to reset my spiritual clock along with those in my home when we adjust for daylight savings time in a few weeks. What am I doing during my days to use my time more efficiently for what God is calling me to do? Am I putting Him first every day to align my day with His will? Am I listening to Him; or do I spend His time with me telling Him all the things I want and need, (which He already knows). My morning offering should include 1. praise 2. thanksgiving 3. acts of faith, hope and love. 4. offer my day and ask Him to bless my efforts 5. listening for the still, small voice.
Shortening Days: My time is a gift from God; every minute. It all belongs to Him. How can I “quicken my step” to make the best use of it all? What do I plan first? Ideally, my priority would be a trip to the chapel to visit Jesus or to mass. Whether I am able to make it to the church or not, a prayer for Spiritual Communion is becoming essential to my day. One friend of mine use to set her phone to pray it every hour.
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You.
Everyone’s Time is Short: We must live every day as if it is our last. Many of our saints became saints because of this very idea. Some were given a bad diagnosis and thought they were dying, so rather than wait around to die, they lived their best and fullest life each and every day as if it were the exclamation point of their life. I don’t mean “sky diving, rocking mountain climbing…” (although all fun ideas Tim McGraw) I mean living in a way that if you were to all of a sudden see God’s face you wouldn’t be like “What Facebook post?” Also honoring the ones who have gone before us as All Souls’ Day approaches in a couple of weeks by praying for those who are departed.
Eternal Father, I offer Thee the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus, in union with the masses said throughout the world today, for all the holy souls in purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the universal church, those in my own home and within my family. Amen.
Autum leads to winter, but fall doesn’t have to lead to our own spiritual decline. What can we do today to adjust our spiritual clock? It’s time….today.