Posted by: Donna Douglass | Tuesday November 4, 2014

Same and different

Homeschooling Zoe, we just finished a unit on leaves including the concept of "same and different". Glancing around my life, I wonder at the pervasiveness of "same and different" and how often they are wrapped up in one, resulting both in comfort from the predictable and excitement from the unexpected. A leaf is always a leaf, yet there are pointy ones and round, complex ones and simple, big ones and small, and at this time of year, leaves of nearly every color of the rainbow! But they’re still leaves.

And it is Fall, when a welcome, familiar crispness comes and leaves pour forth color. Fall comes every year – some years slow, some fast. Some years the colors are swept away quickly by storm, other years they linger, some years brilliant and some mellow. But each fall it’s the same: leaves and temperatures change in the same, but different ways. And there’s comfort and beauty in both the sameness and the difference.

Zoe and Matti are both children, playing their way through early life, thriving on both little daily changes and on the structured routine (just ask their Daddy whose not as familiar with it as Mommy!). Both marvel at the new, yet respond to it uniquely. For Mommy, there’s humor and wonder in both the similarities and the differences.

Our newest baby has arrived by the same method called "natural birth" though each of the three has been completely different (and its own great story!). We now know just enough to say "Generally you might expect something like this, but be prepared for anything!"

And so it has been, too, with God’s moving us to France, Africa, Germany, Palau and now Japan over the last five years. His directions have come at just the right time, never far enough in advance that we might walk a while without Him, but never a moment too late. And they’ve come in ways we understood and to which we can still point. But when they came – and how – has been as varied as creation itself.

So thankful we are for both certainty which prevents chaos and for change which prevents complacency. As in so many things, it forms a perfect balance pointing to a Creator aware of, and concerned for, our needs.

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