Aging Parents,  Depression,  Faith,  Grief and Loss

A Season for Everything

What is it about a simple change in weather that can bring out the best…or the worst…in people? Many of us have a favorite season of the year for various reasons. I love summer. I love that I live just 30 minutes from the beach, and can enjoy God’s beautiful, expanse of ocean and sky. I love that we get to open our above ground pool and enjoy our grandchildren having fun and making memories. I love the cookouts, visits to local theme parks, vacations, time with family and friends, and delicious ice cream on a hot day.

Each new season has the potential for a new beginning of sorts. It’s very representation of newness stirs up changes in our souls. Autumn visions of a favorite warm, cozy sweater, rich hot cocoa, or steaming hot apple cider, can ignite hearts and infuse sheer joy, just as summer visions do for me. My Facebook feed is inundated at the end of summer with posts and photos from my friends sharing their excitement about Pumpkin everything just around the corner, while I’m cramming in every last bit of summer I can.

The Bible references new changes and beginnings in our lives as being seasons. Seasons are metaphors for God’s perfect timing in delivering us through all the changes He allows in our lives.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

For everything there is a season,
    a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
    A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
    A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
    A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
    A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
    A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
    A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate.
    A time for war and a time for peace.

As we consider this scripture, please note the balance of difficult seasons with joyful seasons. Life will never be all good, nor all bad. God knows we need the various seasons of life to grow our character and strengthen our faith, as well as to rest and rejoice. Certain seasons in our lives can bring about the blessings we reap from having been obedient in following Christ through those changes, even if we did not fully understand or welcome them.

So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Galatians 6:9

This scripture tells us to never give up. No matter how long, strenuous, and painstaking the road or trials in our lives may be, there is always a new season ahead, a season of new beginnings.

Every day we can make the decision to begin again. We can adopt a positive mindset to overcome, conquer, and live triumphantly. All beginnings must eventually come to an end so a new beginning, a new season, can commence. We need to seize the opportunities to look ahead at what can be, while forgetting the “what-might-have-beens.” We can challenge ourselves to be better, live higher, rise above our own self-appointed limitations. We can look ahead to a new season of thinking, speaking, acting, and living more positively. Each subtle change we implement toward living a more positive life will eventually take root and manifest itself into our days, weeks, months and years.

A beautiful tree full of wonderful green foliage and rich, ripened fruit, can offer shelter, nourishment, and shade, but only temporarily. The leaves eventually turn brilliant hues of crimsons, golds, and oranges, offering us a wonderful spectacle to behold, a brushstroke of genius only God can artfully paint. God is the ultimate artist and His creation is breathtaking, and His plan is perfect. You are a part of that beautiful creation. A part of His perfect plan.

As a new season arrives, those leaves must fall, leaving that beautiful tree bare and vulnerable. It must then survive the harshest of seasons. The tree must go through the harsh season to begin a new life, a new cycle, with budding blossoms, fragrant and beautiful. And sometimes, like today in Chesapeake, in the middle of the harshest season, God can send us a warm, spring day, reminding us that the winter season won’t last forever. Grab onto those glimpses of hope in your winter season, allowing them to give you strength for the journey.

I went through a winter season recently. It was extremely difficult and I found myself feeling sad, lonely, and depressed. I felt like that winter tree, bare and vulnerable, just trying to survive the harsh season. God brought me out of that into a new season. A season of growth and change as I seek to follow His direction with my writing endeavors. It’s an exciting time, and I’m so thankful for this particular season in my life. I plan to enjoy it as long as possible, and build some strong roots so when the winter comes again, I will be firmly planted in faith and continue to produce good fruit. (Psalm 1:3)

Dare to begin, dare to change. Be strong and positive as you enter each new season, forever trusting God with each unpredictable new step. Never stop believing and growing. We can never fully know what God’s intentions are for us, but we can always do our absolute best wherever He has placed us right now. When we have learned all there is to learn, and are truly grateful in this place, this season, maybe God will move us to a new, more bountiful, and blessed season.

For everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1

No matter our season in life, may we all trust in our God, and choose to do the right things at the right times, just as He has purposed and planned for us.

How about you? What season are you in currently?

If you’re in a blessed season, leave a comment to encourage others to hang in there for brighter days ahead. If you’re in a harsh, winter season, leave a comment so this tribe of friends can encourage you.

As a Jesus girl for more than thirty years, Deena Adams understands how important hope is to daily life, which fuels her passion to inspire others through hope-filled fiction based on true to life stories. She is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency and is a multi-award-winning writer, an active ACFW member, and ACFW Virginia president. Connect with Deena through her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.