A monthly column by Vivienne Solomons who is a legal consultant who passionately believes that God wants His people to make a difference right where they are and to stand up for what is true and just. She is also passionate about encouraging young women to walk victoriously with God and she is engaged in a challenging faith journey as a parent of a child with special needs.
All of us are able to recognise the season of the year, whether spring, summer, autumn (fall) or winter.
Certainly, we can’t help but notice when the season changes, whether from warm to cold or vice versa. But how many of us think of our lives in terms of seasons? And if we do, do we also then take time to acknowledge and embrace the season we are in?
In the midst of our running to and fro, do we even notice when that season is drawing to a close? Oftentimes, it is simply easier to ‘keep on keepin’ on’ rather than making the adjustments a new season may call for.
In the book of Ecclesiastes, King Solomon makes the following statement: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens”. He then goes on to briefly mention the (many) different seasons we are likely to experience during the course of a lifetime:
A time to be born and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot;
A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build;
A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance;
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather them;
A time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to search and a time to give up;
A time to keep and a time to throw away;
A time to tear and a time to mend;
A time to be silent and a time to speak;
A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace.
In other words, our lives are not static but ebb and flow with the changing seasons. A season may last a week, a month or years but whether good or bad, easy or difficult, it is good (but not always easy) to remember that it is only temporary and that it comes to an end. And when it does, another season beckons …
Personally, as one who loves to help others and often finds it difficult to say “no”, I have felt so liberated since I started thinking of my life in terms of seasons.
The reason? I have gained new perspective on events in my own life and how that relates to others. No longer (for the most part!) do I see my life as a straight path, a steady stream of days following one after the other from the cradle to the grave, connected only by the calendar.
I am now better able to embrace my life as it is, knowing that it is but a season, and that in time, the season will change. I have also found it helpful to know that there are seasons not only in my life but also in the lives of those around me and that it even extends to the ‘life’ of our beloved country.
This helps me to be patient with others, not always feeling the need to rush things or people, and to hold the tension between what I want/need and what others want/need, even when it is difficult – especially when it is difficult!
The key to embracing a season is being able to recognise it. When we are able to identify the season we are in, our lives are simple rather than complicated. We have purpose and direction and we are better able to partner with God in what He is doing in us and through us during that time.
And when that season draws to a close and the time comes to move on (whether physically or otherwise), we are better able to let go and step forward into the new season with hope and expectation in our hearts, knowing that God is waiting for us there.
What season of life are you currently in? Are you trusting God for a life partner? Do you have small children or have your children recently left home to pursue further studies in another city or life in another country? Are you caring for an elderly parent? Or are you mourning the loss of a loved one? Perhaps your business is in its growth phase?
Whatever season of life you are in, may you recognise it and be able to fully embrace it and live fully present in it … before it comes to an end!
Acknowledgements: Simplify, Bill Hybels