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Lessons Learned from Changing Seasons
- September 28, 2016
- Chris Lawson
My kids are totally giddy about the changing of seasons. Last week we moved from summer into fall – although someone forgot to tell the temperature…it was almost 90 degrees on Saturday. This changing of seasons brought with it an upcoming series of festivals, fairs, and our trip to Disney World. We have daily countdowns for so many events I am losing track!
And, for the Lawsons, fall is our favorite season.
The weather around North Carolina can remind you of San Diego where it is reportedly 74 every day with a nice breeze. EXCEPT, we get the best marker of fall – the changing of the leaves. A tapestry of God’s creativity that is both beautiful and solemn at the same time.
Seasons were definitely God’s idea.
Fall welcomes in a season of dormancy marked by the cold and blustery chill on a ground that waits with expectancy. Just beneath the ground, at the first promise of change, new life will spring forth and give color and vibrancy to a new season. A season that shouts across the landscape that winter is over and a deeper magic can begin.
Life moves in seasons, too.
As life sprints forth at an unexpected pace we all find ourselves in seasons of transition that shape our vocational identities and family life. These seasons – whether child rearing, unique jobs, raising teenagers, caring for parents, finishing big goals, or finding a new sense of call – bring with them a certain sense of hope and dread.
Here are a few lessons I have learned through experiencing life’s changing seasons:
- Celebrate but Don’t Dwell
As we move into new seasons it is important that we celebrate God’s story through us over the last period of time. But, if we dwell on it too much it will become the anchor that keeps us from moving forward. We should use the celebration of the past season as an opportunity to reflect on God’s faithfulness, and use it as the assurance of God’s continued faithfulness as we move into the next season. God is no less committed to you now than He was then.
- Grieve but Don’t Sit Down
It is completely natural to grieve when things change, but we do not grieve as those who have no hope. If there is anything that God’s faithfulness to you over your life has proven, it is that God never fails. Don’t sit down when life knocks you down – get back up because this next season might really be where God is going to do something new.
- Don’t Fear What We Do Not Know
One of the toughest lessons I have learned in my life is to not fear the things I don’t yet know. Easy to say, hard to do. But as seasons change in our lives, and we move in and out of new opportunities and challenges, it is easy to fear the unknown. This fear can be conquered by reminding ourselves daily of this profound promise of God, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).
- New Birth Always Comes
Seasons of winter can linger too long. But, without fail, the dirt hardened by the winter’s frost eventually gives way to the sprout of new birth. The fertile ground ALWAYS gives way to new fruit. Jesus died in your place for your sin and you have now become the fertile soil through which God is doing something new. We don’t always know when the new season is going to produce something new from God, but we can be sure that it will and that God’s timing is perfect.
Enjoy the fall – buried in the passing of this season is the promise of new birth!