by Dianne Neal Matthews
“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” ― L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
My favorite month always seems to slip by too quickly. I love everything about October: the gorgeous fall foliage, the brisk breezes that energize me, the pumpkin patches and apple orchards offering their bounty, the festivals that display handmade crafts and smell like cinnamon and spice. The tastes of freshly pressed apple cider and hot-from-the-oven pumpkin walnut bread. To top it all off, October includes the birthday of my firstborn child.
Now, I have to admit here that I no longer get to enjoy many of those things unless I travel. For the past six years my husband and I have lived in the deep South. But I can still decorate my house with fall décor even as I wear shorts and flip-flops. I can look at photos and relive memories of Octobers when my children were growing up in the Midwest.
I also have to admit that I lied when I said that I love everything about October. Because my favorite month includes my least favorite holiday. I do not like Halloween. I don’t enjoy seeing skulls, witches, monsters, or giant spiders filling store shelves and adorning yards. I don’t get a kick out of seeing adorable children disguised as mummies or vampires or Frankenstein.
Since I grew up in the country (way out in the country), I only went trick-or-treating two or three times during my childhood. Those were the years when I spent the night with a friend who had actual neighbors. And yes, it was fun. So please don’t think that I’m judging people who like to celebrate Halloween. If they enjoy it, that’s great. But personally, I’m always glad when the day is over.
My point is that I can love the month of October even though it contains a holiday I dislike. And I’ve been thinking that maybe we can apply the quote from Anne of Green Gables to people, too. Don’t we all know someone we simply adore—except for that one habit or character trait that drives us absolutely crazy? Surely we can overlook what annoys us and embrace the friend as a whole. If we concentrate on what we love about them, then when that “thing” grates on our nerves, we’ll be able to say, “I’m so glad I live in a world where there is <insert person’s name>.”
Just like I do with October.
Dianne Neal Matthews is the author of four daily devotional books including The One Year Women of the Bible and Designed for Devotion (a Selah Award winner). She recently collaborated with Ron Deal on Daily Encouragement for the Smart Stepfamily. Dianne also writes for websites and blogs, and contributes regularly to compilations (including Guideposts’ Mornings with Jesus and The Quiet Hour). To learn more, visit www.DianneNealMatthews.com or connect with Dianne through Facebook or Twitter.