Trees give up their leaves in surrender, shutting down further growth for a season; what does my own movement of surrender look like?

Do I surrender with relief at no longer having to carry a burden?

Do I surrender with regret that there was not enough time to enjoy what I am giving up?

Do I surrender with resignation, since nothing further was possible anyway?

Do I surrender with despair that my life will now be so much less?

Do I surrender with expectation, that something better is surely coming my way?

Or do I surrender and wait, simply trusting that growth is happening somewhere, even though I cannot see it at present, cannot know what will be next?


While autumn winds sometimes tear leaves from branches, leaves also fall on days when the air is utterly still, a graceful letting go that requires no external force to make it happen; what do my movements of letting go look like?

Do I pry my fingers loose one at a time, with much effort, fighting against letting go at every turn?

Do I lift a finger or two to first test things and see whether letting go will bring me pain?

Do I open my hands and throw away whatever I was holding, not so much letting go as getting rid of something in anger or revulsion?

Do I hang on tight until someone or something gives me permission to let go, being unwilling or unable to make that decision myself?

Do I let go only when I can immediately put something else in my hands, so there is no time when my hands are empty?

Or do I let go and wait, willing to experience an absence and trusting that more is possible even though I cannot say what it might be?


May this season of surrender find us willing to surrender gracefully, to let go willingly, to wait quietly, to find in this process the meaning we need for all of life’s autumns, all the times surrender and letting go is needed for renewal to come.