Friday, October 16, 2015

I Have a Theory

Today is Friday; it is the day a community of writers set a timer, take a prompt and write. It is an opportunity to spill unedited thoughts across the blogosphere for better or worse. I'm working toward that five-minute limit; I can't seem to corral my thoughts before the timer dings. But I know this is a community of grace and encouragement, and blessed fellowship. The Five-Minute Friday links can be found here. They are always worth the time to read. Today's prompt? Green.

I have a theory about Fall color.

No, it isn't scientific. It isn't provable or quantifiable. It doesn't lend itself to experimentation. It really doesn't sit well in a world of measurement and precision.

In fact, it kind of leans toward the romantic. As in Romanticism. As in the art and literary movement of the first half of the nineteenth century -- with its emphasis on imagination and emotion as opposed to the Enlightenment values of reason and order. Yes, I had to look up the definition - thank you very much to the Metropolitan Museum of Art...

I adore the colors of Fall. I love to watch as the leaves turn, day by day, from deep, summer green to frosted tips of bright yellow and orange, to full-on sunbursts across the spectrum of warm - red, pink, neon brilliance. Just like Paris has it's fashion parades, the trees have theirs; and God, the designer outdoes himself. Season after season. Year after year.

Did you know that the colors we see are actually the reflection of the colors in an object? Light comes in waves. Objects either absorb or reflect those waves. The lightwaves that are reflected back to our eyes, are the colors we see. So when we call a leaf green, we are actually calling it by the color it does NOT contain, by the color it has reflected.

Interesting, right?

So, here's my theory about Fall color. We see green leaves all summer because the leaves are busy absorbing all of the warmth of the summer sun. Not just the warmth, but the warm colors. The reds, the oranges, the yellows. These are being banked, like a savings account, for the future.

And the future is Fall. These amazing colors we see, this cacophony of show-off brilliance, is that savings account.

It is the trees giving back the sunlight of summer.

But what if the future wasn't Fall, but was the future of God's Kingdom. The one Isaiah spoke about: the Glory of Zion? What if Fall color is God's promise to us, like the rainbow, of our future with him? God made the light. He made the trees. He designed the colors of Fall. Why not remind us of the day when He will be our everlasting light and glory.

The sun will no more be your light by day,
nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you,
for the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.
Isaiah 60:19 (NIV)


  1. Love your fake friend, I love the different colors of autumn tool I'm parked in the #17 spot this week.

    1. Big smile on both of your comments. Thanks for coming by! Enjoy your weekend.

  2. I didn't know my ex-student was such a scientist. Wow! I'm impressed. For the record, the wind is blowing hard tonight outside (we're at a vacation house on a Minnesota lake). That wind means, almost certainly, that on today's little bike ride my wife and I likely saw the northwoods at its perfectly colorful peak. Tomorrow, lots of those extraordinary leaves will be down. Sort of sad, but what a blessing to be there right at the most colorful moment (if in fact those colors are really there :)).


I know we probably haven't met in person, but I believe that the sharing of our ideas and thoughts, sometimes our hearts and souls, makes us more than strangers. I would like to say friends. Thank you for taking the time to contribute to my little space - I appreciate you.