I've been thinking a lot lately about seasons. Not so much about the weather but about life. I like how our Senior Pastor's wife put it in a recent sermon on seasons: what occurs in the natural occurs in the spiritual. I mentioned the other day that I had been feeling a bit put out that my planned season of rest has been somewhat usurped by children's needs. I was reminded of the aforementioned sermon as I have tried to get my head around all that is going on, and the busyness that is the end of the school year and preparing for Christmas. In this sermon we were given five principles regarding seasons that I have found helpful. The sermon was a part of a series on marriage, but I am finding these principles helpful in all areas of my life at the moment and perhaps you might them helpful too:
- Every season has a purpose.
There is no such thing as a wasted season - even the dry ones have purpose. Expect to have hope rekindled.
- Recognise the season you are in.
Don't over-spiritualise (Satan is out to get me) or under-spiritualise (oh, that's just what's happening right now) your season. You will either see things that aren't there or miss what's really happening. Be aware of what God is doing.
- Respond appropriately.
An incorrect response to a season can be disastrous - think David and Bathsheba. That event occurred at a time when David had stayed back in Jerusalem during a season when he should have been off at war. (2 Sam 11:1) Don't try to rush ahead of the season or hang on to one for longer than it is meant to be.
- Persevere and push through.
Sometimes we just have to grit our teeth and push through a season. (Gal 6:9)
- Find your 'great work' and do not be undermined.
Like Nehemiah, do not allow others to undermine or distract you from the work God has given you to do. I love the words of Nehemiah, when people tried to undermine his work rebuilding the city walls, that were given here "I am doing a great work and I cannot come down" (Neh 6:3).
Right now my season is to prepare for the next season in my work. Within that, this is my season to care for my children's needs and rest up for the final pushing through of my season of preparation. I am feeling impatient in so many ways, but I am equally aware that it is important to learn all I can while I'm in this season.
What is your season? What is your 'great work'?