Monday, November 14, 2005

Changing Seasons




This article really blessed me and I wanted to share it!

CHANGING SEASONS
By Ruth L. Whitfield, assistant to the publisher of "Spirit Led Woman" magazine (www.spiritledwoman.com)

I love the changing seasons. In Central Florida, where I live, we don't experience seasonal weather changes as much as our friends in other parts of the country, but we do enjoy the change in focus and the cooler weather fall and winter bring. We may not have snow, but we can enjoy lighted snowmen on the porch during the holidays!

Years ago when I taught school, I would change the d├ęcor of my home as often as I changed the one in my classroom--out with one season and in with another. I'd get rid of the old so we could embrace the new. Being a creature of habit, I still like to change my surroundings about every three months.

The Bible says that there is a season for everything in life (see Eccl. 3:1-8). If only we could embrace the seasons of our lives as willingly as we embrace the seasons of the year! It's been said that the only thing that is constant is change, but unfortunately, that's what we tend to resist, especially if it means going outside our comfort zones.

God has planned the seasons of our lives with infinite wisdom. He has ordained each one, knowing exactly what fruit is to be harvested during each time frame. I believe that since His desire is to do us only good, He enjoys each season He plans for us (see Jer. 29:11). So why are we so prone to resist the season we're in?

"But I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope."
~Jer 29:11

It's as if we are never satisfied. When it's summer, we want fall. When it's winter, we want summer. When we are single, we want to be married. When we are married, we want children, and when we have children, we want them to be grown and out of the house. When the nest is finally empty, we miss them and want them back - at least for a little while.

Yet we tend to criticize the children of Israel, who sinned against God for their continued murmuring and complaining. Like spoiled children in the natural, they continually demanded more. God brought them out of 400 years of slavery, gave them rest from their enemies, and provided daily food, water, and protection.

But no matter what He did, it wasn't enough. It seems that what they really wanted was control of their own destiny and circumstances, not total dependence on an invisible God whose plans were for their good (see Jer. 29:11). As a result, an entire generation perished before receiving their promised inheritance.

The wilderness journey was not a picnic. It was an adventure into the unknown, and it was a change of season for an entire nation. But the Lord knew the way through that wilderness, just as He knows the way through ours.

He ushers in the seasons in our lives and walks us through them. All He desires is that we embrace what He is doing in our lives with faith and gratitude (see 1 Thess. 5:18).

God is always working, even in seasons when we don't see much activity. During the season of planting, when there is no harvest, God is watering, nurturing, fertilizing and containing us so that in due season we can bring forth the fruit of righteousness He desires.

After a season of harvest, He often initiates a time of pruning (see John 15:1-2). Painful though this may be, it is necessary for us to produce even more fruit. We can trust God to do whatever He needs to do in our lives today because of His proven faithfulness yesterday (see Lam 3:22-23).

During this season of thanksgiving, let's determine to count our blessings and enjoy, as He does, the season He has us in. Every day is a gift, and we should savor all the sights, sounds, smells, friendships, fellowship, family, food and fun of the season. Let's also be thankful that God, in His infinite wisdom, planned our lives and leads us through many fruitful seasons. Instead of wishing we were in a different one, let's embrace and enjoy the one we are in right now (see Gal. 6:9).

"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart." ~ Gal 6:9

4 comments:

itsboopchile said...

I am reading your blog and thinking, what wisdom!
I am going to read some more for I believe you have lived close to God and I will learn from you.
Thank you, Betty

itsboopchile said...

This seens to be your last blog. Have you given up blogging?
I sincerely hope not.
Betty

Julia Carol Levesque said...

Wait On the Lord for the Due Season
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The King James Version of Galatians 6:9 says, And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

The Lord promises to bring the harvest, the answers we are waiting for, in due season. Because we don't know exactly when due season will be, many believers grow weary during the wait! They think, “Did I miss my appointment?” The Bible promises that God will never be late, but it doesn't tell us that He usually is early either!

Many times He is the God of the midnight hour. He is stretching our faith and teaching us to believe Him for greater things. Believing brings us right into the middle of God's rest. And during the wait our strength is renewed if we wait in faith instead of fear and frustration.

The type of believing that brings us rest when we are waiting for the Lord is this: “God, I believe You are smarter than I am and that You have a better plan than I do! I believe Your timing and Your ways are better than mine because Your thoughts are above my thoughts ” (Isaiah 55:9.)

We must realize that God's timing is more accurate than ours will ever be. This will free us to abandon ourselves to God and say, Lord, I would like to see the circumstances happening this way, but that doesn't seem to be happening. I'm not going to live my life in frustration from struggling to try to do something about something I can't do anything about or trying to make something happen that I'm obviously not making happen.

“I surrender. I give my idea, my timing, my wants and desires to You. Do what You want to do, the way You want, when You want. And I'm going to rest!”

“Fainthearted” means “small-souled.” Because the soul is often defined as the mind, will and emotions, someone who is fainthearted can't mentally handle very much of a problem or challenge coming against them without caving in, wanting to quit and giving up. It isn't very long before they become discouraged, depressed and negative.

When we wait on the Lord and He renews our strength, we become the kind of people the devil can't wear out. We can outlast the devil's attacks, standing against them until we receive the manifestation of our victory in due season.

John 11 gives the account of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.

Jesus said, Take away the stone. Martha, the sister of the dead man, exclaimed, But Lord, by this time he [is decaying and] throws off an offensive odor, for he has been dead four days! Jesus said to her, Did I not tell you and promise you that if you would believe and rely on Me, you would see the glory of God?

John 11:39,40

If there are circumstances in your life that have been dead for so long they smell bad, take a simple, childlike stand and believe: “I don't know what God will do, but I believe He will do something.”

Take Off the Grave Clothes

So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, Father, I thank You that You have heard Me.

Yes, I know You always hear and listen to Me, but I have said this on account of and for the benefit of the people standing around, so that they may believe that You did send Me [that You have made Me Your Messenger].

When He had said this, He shouted with a loud voice, Lazarus, come out!

And out walked the man who had been dead, his hands and feet wrapped in burial cloths (linen strips), and with a [burial] napkin bound around his face. Jesus said to them, Free him of the burial wrappings and let him go.

John 11:41-44

In His prayer, Jesus thanked God that He always heard and listened to Him, a simple confident prayer. When we pray, we can always know God is hearing us.

After praying, Jesus called out in a loud voice and commanded Lazarus to come forth from the tomb. When Lazarus came out of the tomb, he was still bound up. Jesus ordered that his grave clothes be removed from him and that he be set free. Many people who are born again are still bound up in grave clothes from the past.

No matter how long we have been in dead circumstances, when Jesus rolls away the stone and says, “Come out,” that's a brand new beginning. The Lord wants us to cast off our grave clothes and come out of our tomb, free from the restraints of the past and anything else that drains our strength like worry, fear, negativism, etc.

Instead of meditating on our problems, we can keep our minds and hearts focused on the Lord, trusting ourselves and our situation to God, in simple, childlike faith, waiting patiently for Him to act. If we will do that, He has promised we will witness the mighty manifestation of his glory - in due time, at the appointed season.

fawad said...

Great post.I enjoyed it while reading it provides me pleasure.yous blog what can i say great and best.

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