It’s fall where I live. Here in Midwest America the temperatures have begun their slow decline and the leaves are dawning their first hints of reds, oranges, and golds. It’s how it goes, one season comes to a close and the slow transition into the next begins. That’s nature. And that’s life.
Recently I asked the lord what He wants to teach me through my current season, and He spoke these three words: perseverance, patience, and faithfulness. And you know what? That makes sense to me. I get it. And those three words are worth it. Because I know that those words don’t just pertain to my here-and-now, but they will translate into and trickle into every area of my life. If I can learn those words and begin to practice them now, they will affect my education, my work place, my church, my relationships, my marriage, my family, and so much more throughout a lifetime of being faithful to Jesus.
God also spoke a few other things to me when I intentionally gave Him more of my time in order to ask questions and listen for the answers. I heard Him explain that He is preparing me now – in this season that often feels so dormant and stagnant – for seasons that lie ahead; seasons of fruitfulness and harvest. I heard Him reassure me that having a teachable heart now, one that is willing to be pruned and challenged and grown, will provide the rich, nutrient-dense soil through which He will bring up tall trees, with solid root systems, and that will bear much fruit over a lifetime. He reassured me that my current season won’t be in vain if I don’t allow it to be.
It would be easy to sit back and wish away months or even years of my life, hoping to just arrive where I would like to be someday, doing what I would like to be doing. But those months or years would be wasted. I would have wasted the moments of learning from my heavenly Father who always perseveres, who is always patient, and who is always faithful. I would have wasted the lessons that are so important to living out a life of integrity and truth as I pursue Jesus and love others.
I remember the first time I read through the entire book of Ecclesiastes. I remember it because I just kept thinking, “wow, this is so sad and bleak.” But since that first time of reading through the book, I’ve grown to understand that its purpose is not to take away from the meaning of life, but rather to bring to light the true meaning and purpose in life – to know God and to live according to His Word and His call, no matter the season. Ecclesiastes 3:4 says there is “a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance…” and it’s such a reminder to me of the seasonal nature of our lives. Yes, there will be seasons of weeping and mourning. Yes, there will be seasons of joyous laughter and dancing. But, yes, those seasons and every variation between have purpose and value of we don’t allow them to pass by in vain.
Don’t go through your season in vain. Go through it learning and seeking and finding. Seasons at their very purpose bring about change because change is exactly what they are about. Think of leaves turning to gold and orange and red in the fall. Yes, change is happening but the leaves are still beautiful. What are your leaves? What beauty is change leaving in its wake? What beauty will be left in your season’s wake? What makes this season worth it? What makes the gritty, pushing, pulling, and molding nature of your season worth it? What are you allowing your season to teach you and how are you allowing the Potter to sanctify you through your season? Don’t let your season be in vain.
words by Rachel Miller and photo by Sarah Mohan