How do you celebrate the goodness of Fall? It is pumpkin spice everything, something more intentional or both?
We love ALL THE FALL THINGS and wanted to share our hearts when it comes to influencing the atmosphere in our mind, hearts and homes that will leave a lasting impact and create special memories for those we love during this special season.
The Lord in all of His goodness established seasons for us. How can we follow His rhythms and usher in peace and the joys of Fall? What can we learn from this season of letting go, this season of release? How can we step back and welcome the beauty of Fall? What can we do in this season to reflect upon the last season while preparing us for the next season?
I love to inquire of God but I love so much more when I am directed to His life-giving responses. There is so much beauty in coming to His throne and seeking His guidance.
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.Genesis 1:27 ESV
We are co-artist of this life. May the atmosphere of our homes be our masterpiece. 🙏🏻
Atmosphere: the pervading tone or mood of a place, situation, or work of art.
Woman of Influence
God instilled within the very fabric of our being the ability to co-create beauty in our sphere of influence, our home. It is within our ability to set the tone and atmosphere of our home.
Led by the Holy Spirit, we are able to create the sights, the sounds, the smells, and the textures that will usher in joy and delight. We do not need to live in a specific neighborhood, have a certain type of house, or own certain types of furniture to accomplish this.
Woman of God, with what we have from where we are at, we can set the pace, we can usher in the peace, we are able to call down heaven to our home.
So what does this look like?
Release Disorder to Make Way for Rest and Peace
Disorder: a state of confusion; the disruption of peaceful and law-abiding behavior; a disruption of normal physical or mental functions.
There are many scientific studies that tell us mess causes stress and anxiety. Fall is the perfect season to take a look around and embrace the time of release. We see leaves changing colors and trees letting go of their beautiful leaves in preparation for the season to come.
Have you ever wondered why trees shed their leaves? Trees shed their leaves as an ACTIVE process to conserve resources and protect the tree from being blown over in the windier winter months. 🍃It is active preparation for the season to come.🍃
Is God calling you to release some things? Physically, emotionally, relationally? Is God asking you to let go of something as active preparation for the season to come? Could it be time to release our desire to control a situation, relationship or person – release it to God and feel the weight lifted with each prayer as you trust God to see you, hear you and for God’s will to be done.
Prayer allows us to release to God all that we are carrying around. You can release it, you can let it go. You don’t have to carry these burdens anymore. With each prayer you are one step closer to your freedom from the weight of worry.
Are you so overwhelmed by physical clutter and don’t even know where to start?
Try this as a guide to get you started:
Whatever it is that God is calling you to release?
May the Holy Spirit empower you to move forward and with each forward step may you be overwhelmed with peace and rest for your soul.
For God is not a God of disorder but a God of peace.1 Corinthians 14:33
Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.Philippians 3:13-14 ESV
Hospitality with Scents, Sights and Sounds.
When I think of “hospitality”, I immediately think of small talk and cringe. I am not big on small talk but I am learning there are MANY ways to extend hospitality and provide a welcoming home for my immediate family, extended family and friends (new and old alike).
Have you ever smelled a scent and immediately the smell evoked a special memory? Maybe you recall a specific person, place or event.
The Lord, in His infinite wisdom, established a connection between scent and memory. Scientific studies suggest that scents can trigger strong, emotional memories and they are linked to elevated activity in the brain.
Doesn’t a home feel more welcoming when you are first greeted with a beautiful scent, it could be flowers, food, or a familiar fragrance. A beautiful scent in a home is like walking into a warm hug even before being greeted by a smiling face.
Anytime I smell fresh baked cookies, I am immediately wrapped in the joy found when I return to my mom’s home. She is often baking and many of my family associate her home to comforting smells from baking.
It seems that fall naturally welcomes a season of slowing down, where the days are shorter and the nights are cooler.
As the weather and schedules change, I am praying about the atmosphere of our home. The sights, scents, and sounds. I want to establish memories for my family that will last long after they’ve grown. I want to establish a unspoken tradition of ushering in fall with joy and delight.
Will it be perfect – No. Will it always be the same – No. But I want to attempt to extend the same effort for my children and spouse that I use when welcoming guests into our home. I want to be hospitable to those that I do life with everyday.
What might this look like for our family?
I am learning to love to cook. It does not come natural to me yet but that’s okay, I will get there right ☺️ For fall meals, I am going to incorporate seasonal fruits and vegetables to bring in the natural fragrance of fall.
I also love to burn a pretty scent too. I no longer use candles (going green lol) but that doesn’t mean I have to give up pretty scents.
Have you tried switching from your favorite candle fragrance to a soy or beeswax candle option for a non-toxic alternative? Your lungs will thank you 😊
Adding fall decor does not have to be expensive or complicated. We are bringing in some fake pumpkins that will not break the bank when my son decides to play ball with them. We are also adding some falls colors around. We love to craft so our crafts will depict oranges, reds, yellows and navy blues.
Do you have songs that remind you of a season or time in your life? Similar to scents, sounds can evoke memories. Although the connection is not quite as strong as smell.
For me, “the artist formerly known as prince” music will forever remind me of summer dance camp. Why? The teacher loved prince and we listened to all of his songs ALL summer. In my mind, Prince music is associated to summer and dance party 👯 .
What does fall sound like for you?
Rustling leaves, rain drops, thunder storms? I am still working through what type of music I would like as the backdrop for fall. It could be as simple as switching out my cleaning music for something that whispers fall a little more. (Thinking Frank Sinatra, India Arie or Classical Piano music vibe) but I haven’t quite landed anywhere yet. No harm in testing out some lovely coffee house vibe music to help set the tone for fall. All I know is that I want to establish sounds that will fuse memories for my children.
We will also be incorporating all kinds of stories about fall or set in a fall season during our story time. (Big thanks to our library card 📚 🙌🏻)
Each of these features; scents, sights and sounds are another way to offer hospitality this season.
Cultivate a Thankful Heart
There are a total of 91 days in the Fall season. This year, Fall begins Monday September 23rd and ends December 22nd. So much can and will be done as this time passes.
How can we intentionally cultivate our hearts and minds in this time?
Could we commit to cultivating a thankful heart from the first day of fall through Thanksgiving? That is a total 67 days. 🍁 Sounds like a lot doesn’t it? Seems overwhelming but we can do it with the right motivation and application.
Science tells us that this small change, cultivating thankfulness, improves our mind and body healthy, and reduces stress. Doctors say stress weakens our immune system and makes us more prone to illness. We can do this for our mind and body health. 💆🏻♀️
Think of it as “SELF-CARE”
Why do we want to do this? Woman of God, when our hearts are at peace it permeates our atmosphere. It fills the very essence of our home and being.
Our “reactions” will more likely be seasoned with grace and love instead of impatience or frustration. This is not some magical act that will immediately make us the kindest people on the planet, but it will give us a new perspective on the people and situations in our life.
Here are some simple practical tips to add appreciation and gratitude to our day:
Commit to journaling an appreciation for the people and experiences in life. It doesn’t not have to be pretty or some special journal book. I actually use loose papers 🤷🏻♀️
For me, it is all about my heart posture and not my artistic ability or lettering skills, so I use what I have and you can to 📝 .
We can do this in the morning (for the previous day) or at the end of the day. I try my best to make it a daily habit.
Journal Prompt Ideas:
I think about the experiences that made me:
- When I felt kindness
- I try to recall if God answered any of my prayers
I write it all down. This does not have to be a paragraph or book. One or two lines can give us a renewed perspective.
I find myself looking at events and people throughout my day a little different after I’ve experienced a “journal worthy moment”. I bask in them just a little longer – in the moment.
Remember the goal is progress not perfection. So if miss a day or a few days, I don’t stop or quit, I just pick up where I left off and think about what made you smile last. ☺️
Maybe any kind of journaling isn’t your forte. Here is an option just for you 🙏🏻
Daily Thanks Prayer:
Make it a habit to rise, shine and give thanks. First thing in the morning, even before we leave our bed, we can thank God for one thing from yesterday. Simple, and profound in the way it sets up our perspective for the morning (start with a smile by reflecting on the goodness of yesterday) and bonus, we don’t even need to leave our bed to do this.
Do you have crazy mornings or need some structure? Set a reminder on your phone that says “Today I am thankful for?” and then pause for a moment when that buzzer sounds 🤔
I saved this topic for last. It seems so much easier to do the external work – the physical declutter, the decorating, the cooking, lighting a beautiful candle while playing some music.
Internal mental shifts take time, energy and help from the Holy Spirit.
Breaking free from negative thoughts is not only a “let me think new” challenge, it is a spiritual battle. It is the perfect time to lean in to the Holy Spirit and glean from all of His goodness.
Here are some questions, prayer prompts, and encouraging quotes to jump start this journey:
At the end of the day (or season), our goal is to cultivate a home that ushers in joy and delight for myself, my family and our guest while quietly whispering Fall has arrived. It will be different from winter, summer and spring. It will bring a different type of peace. One that says we welcome you, we welcome slow, we welcome unhurried, unbusy, unrushed conversation and play. We welcome release 🙏🏻🤗🙏🏻
May God guide each of us as we cultivate a life giving home that builds memories for years to come. 🙏🏻
With Many Blessings,