Skip to main content

Seasons of Wither

Season of Wither 

Suzanne Elizabeth Anderson

To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

On Monday, I drove over Boreas Pass beneath a canopy of golden Aspen and Colorado blue skies so breathtaking that even a colorblind atheist would see the hand of God.

On Thursday, we celebrated the beginning of autumn. I found myself in the kitchen creating fall inspired dishes, such as red chard lasagna, pizza with smoky bacon and black and green olives and thinking about baby pumpkins stuffed with savory sausage, Emmental cheese, and heavy cream.

Because September marks the start of a new school year, many of us well beyond school age will feel inspired to begin new projects or re-assess those goals we pledged in January.

I’m not going to ask where you are in the targets you set at the start of this calendar year. Either they’ve become an integral part of your life or (as in my case) they’re long forgotten.

Instead, let’s look forward.

Entering the winding down season between now and the quiet dormancy of winter’s blanket, let's emulate the golden Aspen gently discarding that which no longer serves us to make room for new growth.

Because my doctor would like to me to lose ten pounds, I joined group on Facebook endeavoring to walk 100 miles with our dogs between the first day of autumn and the first day of winter. Henry and Max, my two Newfoundland dogs, will enjoy exploring new trails as we walk toward our goal.

What project will you begin?

There are only nine weeks until the start of Advent, the holiday season with parties and lights and all the joy that Christmas brings. Let’s experience these weeks as our season of renewal and begin a new endeavor together.

Here’s the challenge: Over the next nine weeks, let's read one psalm together each week. We can discuss what it means to us and how it relates to our lives.

I’ve chosen the book of Psalms because three years ago reading one each day during Lent is how I developed the habit of reading the Bible. And because Psalms contains some of the most beautiful poetry in the world.

But most of all, I want to read the Book of Psalms with you because it feels the most like a conversation between God and us.

We will discover psalms of great wisdom, sadness, and longing for God’s help. And psalms of indescribable happiness, inspiration, and thanksgiving for answered prayers.

I want to share that joy of discovery with you.

I will continue to write about other topics each week. But I’m going to save a little room to present that week’s Psalm.

Will you join me? It’s only a commitment of nine weeks. Drop by my Facebook page, tell me, and meet other people who are joining us in this project.

Then, at the end of November, we’ll celebrate our accomplishment with four weeks of Advent and the countdown to Christmas!

Let's begin with a psalm that speaks to seasons in our lives and how we can grow stronger.

Note: Please read the psalm aloud. What verses grab your attention?

Psalm 1
Happy are those who don’t listen to the wicked,
    who don’t go where sinners go,
    who don't do what evil people do.
2 They love the Lord’s teachings,
    and they think about those teachings day and night.
3 They are strong, like a tree planted by a river.
    The tree produces fruit in season,
    and its leaves don’t die.
Everything they do will succeed.
4 But wicked people are not like that.
    They are like chaff that the wind blows away.
5 So the wicked will not escape God’s punishment.
    Sinners will not worship with God’s people.
6 This is because the Lord takes care of his people,
    but the wicked will be destroyed.

Read the verses that speak to you again. How do they relate to your life? I will post this column at the top of my Facebook page. Please stop by and leave a comment with your thoughts on this week’s psalm.
Suzanne Elizabeth Anderson is the author of A Map of Heaven and other books. Join Suzanne at


Popular posts from this blog

Women are Highly Esteemed in the Eyes of This Man

I enter the sanctuary of Our Lady of Peace Church and my eyes adjust to the dimmed lights as the only illumination comes from candles on the altar and their glowing reflection in the monstrance holding the Blessed Sacrament.
My friend and I had come to join the Mary and Martha’s quarterly meeting which started with an hour of Adoration.
I took my seat in one of the pews, knelt, and surreptitiously glanced around the sanctuary. In the gloaming, I could see thirty other women kneeling like sentinels in silent prayer. 
Over the course of the hour, we would remain in contemplative silence.
As I slipped in and out of my prayers and wandering thoughts, I considered how pleased God must be when he sees us gathered in the simple and divine act of Adoration.
But in fact, women are highly esteemed in God’s sight not matter where we are. 
We only look at the life of Jesus Christ to understand how dearly he cherishes every woman.
In the Gospel of Saint John, a group of men bring a woman caught i…

When our spirit hungers

The precocious toddler’s interest in talking to her mother grew in insistence as the gathered group settled in for an hour of silent prayer. Shushing didn’t work, so the mother led her child into an adjoining room where she would still be part of the sanctuary, but sound would be dampened. Despite the closed door and heavy glass walls, the child’s fervent desire to speak with her mother was still audible.
I said a prayer for the patient mother determined to stay, and for the child who was either tired or hungry or impatient for Mom’s undivided attention. And then tried to bring my wandering thoughts back to prayer. I had come to Adoration with my own pressing need for answers.
Over the past few weeks I’ve noticed a growing emptiness in my heart. A void, as if something is missing. It’s not psychological. Not physical. After doing an internal check, I determined it’s a spiritual void that I’m experiencing.
No, I’m not doubting God, his existence or goodness. I have full confidence in…

If you are tired of the guilt trip you usually feel at church, here’s a different perspective

I am counting the days until I fly to Fort Lauderdale to see Mom for Christmas. Yes, I speak with her every day, sometimes twice a day. But as you know, phone calls just aren’t the same as being with someone you love. I look forward to seeing Mom’s smile, to holding her hand, to going for a drive along the beach with her. Spending time in the presence of someone we love enriches our relationship with them.
I believe the love I feel for Mom, is a sliver of what God feels for each of us. I believe God longs to share that love with us. Which is why we are called to spend time in God’s presence daily. We experience God’s presence when we meet him in our prayers, in church, and hopefully in one another. If I could make one wish for each of us, it would be that at some point during the next four weeks of Advent we would experience how much Jesus loves us.

The Best Christmas

During my morning devotions, I read these two verses of Psalm 117:
Praise theLord,all you nations;
extol him, all you peop…