Some beginnings are brown. There is nothing fresh or new about them.
Take autumn, for instance. In my mind, it begins with the first gilded edge on the giant magnolia tree. In my mind, it begins with the weeping willow’s coppery sheen.
Apparently, my mind is wrong. Has been wrong for all these years. Because autumn is beginning, and it is brown.
It is brown where the seed pods rattle in the flowerbeds. It is brown where the first leaves have fallen and turned crispy. They were overeager. They could not wait for their orange or red transformation. The reward for their impatience is to be mistaken for dull oak leaves rather than the vivid maples they are.
Some have asked how the book writing is progressing. I tell them all the same thing. I tell them I have written a lot of words, and I despise every one of them.
The response to my honesty has been, universally, a wide-eyed look of concern. I appreciate the concern. It draws out the nurturer in me. I want to pat each friend on the hand, I want to pat myself on the hand, and say, “There, there. I think it will be okay. It is only that some beginnings are brown.”
Beginnings rarely make a clean break with endings. The two are usually muddled together.
It can all be a bit discouraging without eyes to see. I am praying for eyes to see.
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? (Isaiah 43:18-19)
Do not dwell on the past.
What relief there is in those words. How light is their burden.
Light enough that we are able to keep walking. Perhaps even with a spring in our step, which, as you know, is a sign of anticipation. We know we are closer.
Every day brings us closer to that place where the water runs fast and clear.