Seasons...have you ever wondered why? Why did God create seasons? Every season's end is the beginning of a new season. The new season cannot begin without the old ending. Spring cannot come with the end of summer. New birth cannot come without the dying from the season before. What if the entire point of our seasons is to help us understand our own lives? What if there was a greater reason that God created the seasons...the rhythm of nature. What if it was to make the rhythm & patterns of our lives seem simple & obvious, yet many of us have missed it...what if?
I've found in my 35 years on earth, 15 of which have been spent serving in ministry, that life has had its seasons. Many seasons. There have been some days that felt like seasons in themselves. But the common thread was that there was a lot of dying, or things ending, that had to occur in order for the next season to begin.
Now, I don't know if you are like me...probably not, y'all are probably much sharper than I am, but here's what I've noticed...I don't like when things end. I want to hang on to things. I want to hang on to seasons. I love fall & I love the spring. I love cooler weather, but I also love color. In the fall I love the new colors of nature. In spring I love the colors of new birth. I can look back on my life and spell out many of the seasons that were quite colorful...and I wanted to hang on to them. Yet, if they would not have ended, the next season could not have begun.
Many of us, maybe even you as you read this, find ourselves in seasons where we have a lot of why questions. Why am I going through this season? Why aren't things working out? Why am I struggling so much? The list goes on & on right? What if our life reflects God's creation...in seasons? If we could understand that life has a rhythm with seasons, would we be so miserable in the midst of the seasons, or would we embrace the seasons & make them the best we can as we wait for the next coming season?
Listen, I'm not a huge fan of summer (it's hot & I sweat) or winter (I don't like the cold & I hate wearing coats). However, in the summer you better believe I will be playing golf & enjoying time outside with my kids even though I'm sweating so much that you could have a slip-n-slide on my head. In the winter you can count on us playing in snow (especially in Indiana) & counting down the days to Christmas. We make the best of every season we find ourselves in. Why don't we do this in our personal lives? In our spiritual lives? In our relational lives?
I fear that many of us give up when we find ourselves in the midst of an uncomfortable season, when God is waiting just on the other side of that season to begin a new one. The beauty of spring cannot come without the bitter cold of winter. Fall cannot come without the scorching summer heat. Often beauty comes only after suffering through the uncomfortable seasons.
Can we stop being miserable in the seasons we find ourselves in? Can we embrace that it is just that...a season? Can we make this season, that you & I are in right now...as awesome as we possibly can, knowing that God has a new season coming soon?
What season are you in? How can you embrace it? If you find yourself in the midst of scorching heat, can you enjoy the beauty of sunshine? If you find yourself in the midst of an ice cold winter, wondering if it will ever end...will you build a snowman (like that 'Frozen' reference)? If you find yourself in the midst of fall, where things feel like they're beginning to die, yet there is beauty in the midst, can you enjoy a bonfire in the company of people you value? If you find yourself in the spring, full of new life all around you...would you reflect on the gratitude of life itself?
What season are you in? As I sit here in John Wayne Airport in California, waiting to board a plane back home, I cannot help but reflect on the past season I've been in for about 18 months. It has been the most difficult season of my life. One that I honestly never thought would end. What was strange, is that I didn't realize I was in the season until I had to get help getting out of it. I'm grateful for that season, I'm grateful that God showed me mercy & grace...that He had His hand upon my family & my church in the midst of a tough season. I'm grateful that He allowed me to experience the pains & the triumphs of that season so I could learn to rely more upon His power & less on my own. Depend more upon His leadership & less on my own experience. Be more aware that my family, my church, my skills, my resources...everything is His to use however He sees fit.
At Grace Crossing, where I have the pleasure of leading & serving...we are entering into a new season. May we embrace it & make it the best season yet.
Until next time...Always Believe.