By Jenn Weiser
The barren trees, stunted brown grass, recurrence of gray skies, colder temperature, and extended darkness fill the winter days ahead of us. We long for the warmth of the sun, color returning to nature, and light to last longer than the dark. Why must there be a season that feels so miserable?
Genesis 1:14 (ESV)
“And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years,”
Each season fulfills a purpose. The obvious is planting, growing, and harvesting, but what about the dormant season? What is its purpose? For a plant to go dormant it must have less light and colder temperatures. It serves the plant well to go through a dormancy period to store up energy for the new growth in the next season and be plentiful with production. If a plant just keeps producing all of the time, its production is poor and can result in an impoverished harvest.
Growing our relationship with God is much like the seasons. We plant our seeds of hope and faith. We have the Son (sun), Jesus Chirst, to help us grow the roots deeper into the faith. We soak up the word (water) that quenches our thirst. We harvest the goodness of God and share with others that come to our table.
“He changes times and seasons;”
Then the season changes. We dig in, read more devotionals, listen to more sermons or podcasts, sing all the songs but our heart just doesn’t seem to be in it. Our heart is tired and it makes us feel like we are failing on all levels. Our heart needs rest. Our spiritual work is great! Good job, well done! But don’t forget your own heart that seeks to just be at rest in God’s presence. Our salvation is not based on good works but on Jesus’ sacrifice for our sins. And the good works that produce fruit are from God working in our lives to begin with.
Hebrews 4:9-10 (ESV)
“So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from His.”
Our God is a God of grace and mercy, and He makes those new to us each day. God will meet you right in the midst of where you are, all you have to do is ask. Draw near to Him and he will clothe you with mercy and grace and give you the rest that your heart is searching for.
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
We all go through different seasons at different times, that doesn’t necessarily coincide with the weather pattern. We must use discernment to recognize the season that we are in and make the best of it. No matter if it’s a working season or not we must take the time to rest and ensure our roots are deeply planted for when the storm comes to test our faith. Take a break, rest in God’s goodness, prepare for the next season He is calling you for.
“Perhaps, O tried soul, the Lord is doing this to develop thy graces. There are some of thy graces which would never be discovered if it were not for thy trials. Dost thou not know that thy faith never looks so grand in summer weather as it does in winter? Love is too often like a glow-worm, showing but little light except it be in the midst of surrounding darkness. Hope itself is like a star- not to be seen in sunshine of prosperity, and only to be discovered in the night of adversity. Afflictions are often the black foils in which God doth set the jewels of his children’s graces, to make them shine the better.”
Charles H. Spurgeon