Spring has always been my favourite season of the year, and more so since we moved to Scotland, where the seasons are so much more defined. The winters here make life a little more difficult as you face snow, constant coldness and limited daylight. Everything takes that little bit more effort to make things happen and there’s a sense of hunkering down and ‘getting through it’. When spring time arrives, you’re certainly more than ready for it.
But in Scotland, there’s always a few false starts where you think spring has arrived, but then it quickly disappears again. Even as I write this in early April, I’m watching snow fall outside the window. Our daffodils in the garden are dragging their heads on the ground under the weight of the cold onslaught. The very sign of spring has been brought down.
For me, the past few years have felt very much like a winter season in my life; a time of endurance and a longing for the spring time to come with a few false starts along the way.
As I’ve gone through this, the Lord has led me to the story of Noah. It started with God shutting the door to the ark. He put this whole season into motion … not the enemy, not my sin ... God. Then there’s the interminable wait … wait … wait … wait … wait. But the waiting isn’t nothing. There are things to do and a process to go through.
Noah also experienced several false starts to his new season of being out of the boat. After forty days and nights, it stopped raining. Hooray … let’s go! But no, there were months of floating around on the water until they came to rest on the mountain. Hooray … let’s go! But no, the ark sat not moving for another few months as the waters receded.
Desperation must have been sinking in for Noah and his family, undoubtedly sick of each other, the animals and the stench that must have pervaded the whole boat. Even after the final dove didn’t return there was another wait … another false start. But when the glorious day of release came, God’s blessing was poured out upon them.
I thank God for the example of Noah, knowing that God puts us in seasons of winter for His purposes to be fulfilled. This season has been one of huge growth in my relationship with God, something I wouldn’t have achieved in the relative ease of other seasons. The truth is, without winter, we won’t be ready for our spring time. We can’t push it, pull it or make it happen any quicker than I can make the snow falling outside go away and break through into glorious sunshine and new life. That is God’s work. Mine is to submit and yield to His seasons. Spring will come in His time.
Prayer: Father God, You made the seasons for the earth and for our lives. Please help me to yield to Your seasons in my life so I can grow and be ready for the new that will come when spring finally arrives. Amen.
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