Today as I sat meditating on various things that I have recently walked through the word season kept whispering through my soul. I decided to look up the word Season to gain greater understanding.
Before looking the word up the thought that kept crossing my mind was the definition that has to do with the weather and the varying differences of each time of the year. I believe this use of the word stood out to me because we just recently moved to Georgia from Texas. The area of Texas we lived in experienced summer most of the year with a very short winter season. For the most part fall and spring were skipped over by warm weather at times in the 80s or higher when other states were experiencing various seasons.
In Georgia seeing red, orange and yellow trees in the fall was a beautiful site that my children had never experienced before. Cold and wet weather all the way through March was also a new experience for us. Itís spring time now here in our area of Georgia and the grass is turning green, the trees are budding, the flowers are blooming and the pollen is covering everything! Green pollen dust is everywhere from the ground to our cars, cookout grills and more. Anything that can accumulate the layers of pollen dust is covered. So as beautiful as the spring is here the pesky pollen dust and the allergies that come with it slightly hinder the enjoyment of the beauty.
Thatís what God was ministering to my heart today, that with every season there is beauty and benefits to be enjoyed but there are also pesky circumstances that comes with each one of them. Both the good and the bad make up the season and are a part of the balance of each season of life.
In Websterís dictionary one of the definitions listed was simply: ďat the right timeĒ.
ďAt the right timeĒ spring leaves and summer takes over, then summerís hot temperatures melt away into fall and fall into winter. We have no control over it; all we can do is purchase the right clothes and equipment to prepare us to get through the season. The more flexibility we have to flow with the season the more enjoyable it will be. Complaining about the season doesn't bring the next one faster and certainly doesn't wish away the negative circumstances we are experiencing. The more prepared we are for the season the easier it is to press through the adversity the season may bring and hopefully allow us to stop and see the beauty of each season as we pass through.
Life brings about seasons. Each one comes ďat the right timeĒ. We donít determine what the right time for the various things we go through is, God does. He wonít allow us to go through things He knows we are not equipped to overcome. His GRACE strengthens us to overcome the negative circumstances that come with each season so we can trust that we are equipped to get through them.
In the past year I have experienced several new seasons requiring me to step back and remember where my strength and joy comes from and that HIS grace is sufficient for me. Each of these seasons brought something beautiful but also emotions that I didn't expect to be a challenge for me.
Each season brought new emotions that were good and some thoughts that felt difficult and lonely and that I had never experienced before. My youngest child graduated from high school. For me it wasn't just the graduating of my youngest daughter but the fact that it ended a season of life where my children were with me every day because I was their principal from 1st Ė 12th grade. Both of my daughters have become young ladies and learning my place as mom has been difficult although budding great friendships are developing. The emotions of them not needing me on a daily basis like they use to feels painful and yet watching them grow into beautiful women who know how to hear the voice of God and make decisions for their life that not only please us but God has brought great joy. Each day I let a little bit more of our past relationship go as I watch them continue bloom into their destiny while making God decisions for their life. It truly is like the spring of beautiful flowers; with Godís help Iíll overcome the pesky pollen.
I love the comfort of sitting by the fireplace in the winter and enjoying all of its beauty, but the below freezing weather is not fun when going places. Scraping ice off the windows, watching for it on the roads, walking with the wind blowing in your face and having to wear several layers of clothes to stay warm make the time of year a bit uncomfortable and thatís I how felt in my new work season because I no longer have my husband in the office next door to me. For 20 years our offices were side by side and I could stop by his office to sit and share the frustrations of my day and ask for advice on how to handle things, or I could just stop by to grab a quick kiss before rushing off to handle the next task that needed my attention. Just knowing he was there brought comfort that helped to push away the pressures that I would encounter on a daily basis. Being away from my husband each day has been a difficult new season that like winter is a bit uncomfortable.
The 30 miles between our offices seem small compared to the 1000 miles between my spiritual son who just moved out and me. He has been a close part of my life for 9 years, I helped to pull him out of a bad situation when he was 16 and with Godís help he grew into an amazing young man. He and I worked on the same staff and were together daily, joking, laughing and sometimes crying together as we encountered tough growth seasons for him, which ultimately helped me grow. He was at our home every day for a part of the day; he had traveled with us on our family vacations and lived with us in Georgia before moving back to a new ministry position in Texas. This reminds me of summer and how the heat of the day is miserable for normal activities and yet it is the time of year when we can spend time at the pool or lake relaxing and being refreshed by the breeze and the cool water. Seeing the fruit of our labor in helping our son become the man he is today and serving in the new position he has been blessed with is miserable due to the distance but refreshing at the same time.
The beautiful trees of fall color our world but once we experience the beauty and cherish it with walks and pictures the wind comes and they all fall to the ground and become brown. I left many friends and family in Texas and they all have colored my world in a beautiful way. I have many memories and pictures that will forever ring in the heart of my soul. With the move some will fall off in the wind and I will never spend time with them again but some will be like the leaves that turn into fertilizer and bring a healthier life in the spring giving birth to new and beautiful flowers. I know that new beautiful relationships will emerge here in Georgia and that those friendships from Texas that survive will emerge with an even greater depth and beauty because they survived the distance (winter).
In the midst of all of these season changes in my life Godís grace is sufficient and I am overcoming the emotions I felt towards all of the negative sides to each new season. I had begun to have a grateful heart for the beauty of each new season and then it happened. My job ended throwing yet another new season at me. I had placed great pride, confidence and value in this position but towards the end of my 90 day probation period I mutually agreed with my employer that I was not the right fit for the position. There were various things I know the Holy Spirit tried to show me before this day and I should have given my resignation before this; but because Iím not a quitter I just kept pushing through hoping that the obvious things that were not right would change.
Having an executive director position felt like success, but I was overworked and too tired to spend quality time with my family in the evenings. I had promised myself that once we moved I would do more of this. I was missing evening church events that I wanted to attend. I was unable to attend my first lunch invitation with a new friend. When I was at church on Sundays I was simply trying to overcome rather than connecting in exuberant worship as I had experienced the first few weeks we attended our new church and for the most part I missed the last two weeks of spending time with my son before he left. I was working 13 hour days with an additional 90 minute round trip drive. Waking up and leaving before my family was awake and either going to bed much earlier than everyone else to prepare for the next early morning or working late nights on my computer to catch up on work from the office. When we spent time together my mind was engulfed with the challenges at the office and what I needed to do to fix them. So while I was in the presence of my loved ones in body, my mind was far from them.
The position seemed successful but the season to which I knew God had called me to here in Georgia was not happening. It was not ďat the right timeĒ for me to have another position where I was in a management which required ALL of me most hours of the day. I had missed it by moving back into a former season.
I regrouped and asked God to remind me what season I was in. He gently reminded me Iím to focus on my dream which is my family, my passion to write, to volunteer at my church and to help Christian parents raise their children.
Although my children are young adults itís ďat the right timeĒ for me to enjoy them before they move into their next season of courtship and marriage. Once they are married and no longer living with me it may be time to move back into an executive position but for now Iím pouring all I have into my dreams.
I read a quote this week, ďDonít get so busy trying to connect with important people that you canít spend time with the most important peopleĒ. In essence this is what I had done, although I wasn't working to spend time with important people I was working to be ďSuccessfulĒ in manís eyes and missing out on the season God had given to me.
My new job may seem ďunsuccessfulĒ in manís eyes but in truth itís right in line with the season God has me in and I know the trees of my life are turning a beautiful red, yellow and orange.
For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heavenÖ Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (NLT)