When I was a child, I thought that leaves changed color because something new was added. One of my favorite science teachers set up an experiment to show that the changes were a result of nature's preparation for winter. While the leaves are green, the trees are busy manufacturing their own food. As daylight becomes shorter and humidity changes, production slows down. The green color fades away, and the colors beneath are revealed.
The rich hues that we see have always been there. We just had to wait.
Today, I feel comforted to know that the challenges I've faced are part of a much bigger plan. If I offer my efforts up to God, I can enjoy the source of my strength. When my life's tasks are complete, the fading "green" of my days will allow others to see God's beauty more clearly.
"But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed," (1 Peter 4:13 NIV).