Seasons are an interesting thing. You can’t control them. You can’t choose or manipulate what you see through your window each morning. You can’t decide to get a hot, sunny day in the middle of winter just because that’s what you want. Seasons come and seasons go. Whether a physical season or a “season of life”, we are dealt these days with little wiggle room. You can hide inside or face the weather by stepping out. Either way, the days have an allotted time.
This past season was so gross for me. I wrestled with anxiety, loneliness, depression, fear of death and probably the scariest for me of all: feeling useless. That may sound silly for that to be my “scariest” but for someone who has been in ministry for 15+ years, feeling useless has been terrible. I’ve been walking through pregnancy, so I’d say I definitely have had “purpose” but I’ve felt like I have no words to write or speak for others. I felt like a hypocrite encouraging anyone else when I know the discouragement I personally was fighting against. I felt like my hands were so full of my own worries, I couldn’t reach out to others.
I’ve wanted to control and speed this process up. I’ve been embarrassed of my struggles. Besides my husband, daughter and very few others, I have withdrawn from people. And again, I have simply felt useless, questioning both my calling and purpose.
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;” (taken from Ecclesiastes 3:1-7 KJV).
During this “season” I’ve had to embrace the fact that I am not always meant to speak. I’ve had to relinquish my own (strong) will. I’ve had to surrender to God’s plan. I’ve had to sit, listen, receive and rest. Not the “kick your feet up and watch TV” kind of resting (although I’ve definitely watched my share of Hulu), but the “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” kind (Matthew 11:28 KJV).
During this time I had multiple people speak to me from God, telling me to “rest” & “stop pushing back” against His plan for me. Truly, once I relaxed and stopped fighting the discomfort, I felt this release and joy while accepting His easy yoke (Matthew 11:30 KJV). Check out the Message version which translates “Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly”.
What’s interesting to me is that it was about 9 months ago that I last posted to this blog. My spiritual season paralleled the physical. As I grew this child the Lord allowed me to fall into a space of rest. It wasn’t all easy, and neither is pregnancy. It’s not just the “glow” and flattering maternity photos followed by - POOF - a cute baby! It’s also the aches, pains and discomforts that last “for a season”. A season that changes you, brings growth and ultimately is brought to a close by birthing a new beginning.
Maybe you, too, are in a season that is uncomfortable and less than welcomed. It may be impossible to rush your season or erase the scenery around you, but keeping company with The King will change your perspective and bring relief.
So what is your purpose for this season? Only you and God can figure this one out. Maybe you won’t like the purpose and even fight it, as I did. But I would encourage you to pray, meditate and relax into it, whatever it is. Allow God to grow you. Allow grace for yourself. Allow others to bless you. Perhaps this is a season of action for you. Maybe this is your time to step up, go and/or bless others. Whatever God has brought you to, you can.