There are roses outside my church that I notice each year in the fall. They are a little rebellious and cheeky because in a season when they are supposed to be done, they are in full bloom and still growing. (Roses are more of a June thing in Canada) It’s October, and last week as I was leaving church –  there they were again. Boldly blooming in the fall, in a season when everything else is fading away.

“Hello pretty roses,” I say as I walk by. I don’t normally talk to flowers, but this is our 3rd unexpected fall together.  I feel like I need to acknowledge that they made it this far, again.  

I know they won’t last forever (although one year they made it to the first snowfall and were beautifully encased in ice) and in a couple weeks they will be gone as the cold winds come. But right now they are standing strong, surrounding the building in a row of colour. Trying to get their last bit of beauty-hurrah displayed before the long winter arrives.

Showing that what grows in one season, can still thrive in another. 

Even when you don’t expect it. 

We all walk through seasons of growth and bloom, and seasons when things feel like they are dying and fading away. In a few weeks when those pink petals hit the ground and begin to compost into the earth, no one will be looking at the rose bushes anymore. The immediate beauty is lost, and there is nothing to show. The season has run it’s course. Who’s going to get excited about prickly twigs sticking up through the ground?  Cold hard dirt that doesn’t look pretty? Instead we will walk by the straggly branches, sometimes even trampling them. Not remembering the glorious display they once held. Yet, underneath in the cold hard soil  the roots are working hard.

We forget. 

Without the branches, there would be no bloom. 

The beauty is in the getting ready.

The beauty is in the growth. 

The beauty comes from the deep places

Life is not always a glorious display. When seasons change and things look different, we often panic and don’t know what to do. We don’t know when the next bloom will come. But there is a time when we have to let the old go. Make room for something new to thrive while absorbing what has just taken place. Let those petals die in the ground, so they can prepare the soil for the future. 

Value the growth as much as the display.

Bloom when you can, and give it all you have.

Then wait.

You can’t see the blooms in every season, but they come back. 

They might even surprise you.

Like a June rose, living an unexpected October life.