Autumn days: They're all crisp and full of rosy cheeks and wispy hair and the color orange. They smell like gray memories and the beginning of new adventures. They seem to ebb me on towards something beautiful and better as I wave goodbye to the end of a season.

Tag always feels like an Autumn game to me. Once the leaves had turned from green to color, my siblings and I would be out there chasing each other around. Tag was our fall game.

Though I loved playing with my brothers, I dreaded the game of tag. The thought alone of someone chasing after me was terrifying, and the fact that I was an excruciatingly slow runner made it ten times worse. I remember one time playing tag with two of my brothers outside on a crisp fall day. It was one of those days that freezes your finger tips and turns your nose red, but as a child you refuse to wear a coat because there is no snow on the ground. The trees were bare, the day was grey, and my little heart was racing faster than my slow legs would carry me.

I was running along the side of our house with a ridiculous feeling of anxiety sitting at the bottom of my stomach. As I reached the front yard, my brother popped out of the bushes and began to charge towards me. Naturally, I screamed like I was being chased by a serial killer rather than my older brother and ran for my life in the opposite direction. Desperate for a safe place to hide, I bolted into our cluttered, single-car garage. Big mistake. My brother had followed me and I found myself trapped. So I used another tactic: I threw myself into a small corner with my back against the wall and screamed, finally giving in and surrendering to the loss.

Yep. I was pretty awful at tag, but I was great at avoiding the inevitable until I ran out of breath.

This season is a reminder to me to stop running and to learn from the beautiful leaves all around. It is a reminder to surrender...and fall instead of running.

How can death be so glorious? And endings so beautiful? Fall feels like watching new things come from old things...like cleaning house. It is a season of mourning as we strip ourselves of the old and make way for the brand new that will be as white as snow. It is the season of letting go and making the choice to allow the dead things to fall away like so many leaves drifting to the ground.

It is slow.

Relentless.

Inevitable.

And yet there is still beauty in clearing ourselves of what will no longer be and making way for the start of something pure...the vibrant colors cry out. Demanding attention and displaying the beauty of the King's mighty work within us.

Though there are endings, His hope remains steadfast and timeless even as the leaves fall, and through the ever changing seasons.