There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven.
Letting go never seems to get any easier. We've been practicing all our lives but we still cling to what is in our grasp. Why is it so hard?
Maybe it's the sense of loss - knowing that what was can never be again.
With a jumble of emotions I watch as my boys both leave for college. Along with the joy of their achievements and growth, I also feel a deep sense of sadness and loss as I realize that their childhoods are behind them - a once in a lifetime experience never to be repeated. The delights and the heartbreaks, the trials and the triumphs, first words, first steps, first days of school, first failures, first loss - these are all gathered together as memories like their favorite outgrown toys packed safely away in the attic.
All of our days are really once in a lifetime experiences - precious time that has been given to us as sheer gift. It can be so easy to lose sight of this as we go through the routines of our day without stopping to recognize the beauty around us. We forget the fleeting nature of time and how quickly things change. We forget that things will not always be as they are today.
As I write this the leaves on the Dogwoods are beginning to blush with autumn. Each year as I watch the leaves fall, a sadness descends over me and I long for them to stay. But I know the leaves must fall to continue the ongoing cycle of the tree's growth. They must make way for the vibrant new life of the coming spring.
We have our own cycles of loss and change in our growth as unique children of God. We are being shaped and transformed by each experience on our journey. Letting go, we are made ready to move on to our next stage. Letting go, we are made ready for new life.