Good seasons, bad seasons
Spring is a season full of hope and expectation for a gardener. The long, dreary winter days are coming to a close and the rest of the year is anticipated to be a good one. Spring brings fresh growth and summer brings family fun. But, by the end of Fall, a gardener may only see a long, cold, dreary winter that will follow. A downward spiral begins. Sometimes, it’s hard to be ok with a change of seasons.
Our seasonal life patterns
Our life is full of seasons and we can often view them like the gardener I just described. We would much rather view seasons with nothing but positivity. As American achievers, we tend to want our life to reflect a long, productive career and happy families that are also successful. Many feel that the ideal retired person would be able to boast of having reached the top of his corporate ladder and profitably retired from that company with lots of wonderful benefits adding to the retirement.
Is that our life?
Even though an amazing ending of a career is to be greatly admired, the fact still remains, our life is not about a career. But the reality is that many of us lose sight of that and secretly hope for life to fall neatly into place, no worries, no troubles.
Thank God, He is not limited to our box of “ideal”.
God often works through changes that don’t follow our concept of what is best. He may have seasons for you that you didn’t foresee. Though the seasons change, navigating through them can be a chapter in our story that we simply don’t want to embrace.
The choice is yours
Just like a dread of winter coming (for some of us it could be a dread of a hot summer), we may try to put it off, but it won’t do any good. The choice is yours. Brace yourself and grit your teeth or accept change as a new adventure that will take you places you have never been before.
Map your seasons
I want to show you something about the seasons in your life. Ready?
Get out a piece of paper or bring up a note-taking app.
- List events, work, and decisions that you would say are an important part of your life history. Use one line per item that you list.
- Do it! You gotta write it down!
- Take a look at the steps that have happened, ending with where you are now.
- Draw a sideways caret that connects one event to another. Repeat that step, making as many connections as you can. They may not always be sequential, but they can be related or a cause that led to the other.
- Label the connections with a word that first comes to you. Some may be an “I don’t know”. Leave them blank.
Identify the pattern
Can you see a pattern? If you do, can you label the pattern? I hope that, when you look at your list, you see that God really does have your life and seasons of life in His plan for you.
What if the labels are negative?
God’s purposes are still being worked out in your life. You can count on that. It doesn’t matter if you slide easily into the new season or if you have a hard time with it. God uses these seasons for your good, even when they seem to be negative.
Growth springs from seasonal changes
One day, you will look back and see the growth that happened-a growth that could not have happened if you had not gone through a change of seasons, even if you think it’s not a good season. You will see God’s faithfulness through it all. God’s plan in the changes is to bring you into a deeper relationship with Him, which is good. It’s good.
Seasons of Devotion is a reminder that, no matter what season of life you are in, no matter how long or how temporary, devotion to God through it all can turn a sweet surrender into peace, joy, and victory.
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Hope for the “not so good” seasons
You may be reading this might be saying, wow, my past doesn’t look very good. Maybe your connection labels show how one bad choice led to another. That can change too. The Lord forgives if you confess what you have done and ask forgiveness. He can and will forgive you, giving you a new start. God will give you strength each day.
Take the risk and dare to embrace a new season of life.
Your new season can become full of good memory treasures. Rest assured, God knows what He is doing. Take time to read Ecclesiastes ch. 3. Click here and it will take you right to it.
Take another look
Look at the post image again. Did you notice the heart? God’s love remains even though the seasons change. Change is good.
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens – Ecc 3:1 NIV