"For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful to those for whose sake it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God." -Hebrews 6:7 ESV
On my walk around the neighborhood the other day, I saw a pop of green against grainy, muddy black dirt and it sparked a hope I'd not felt since autumn's beautiful leaves. "Finally," I recognized myself saying, grateful the budding plant found the courage to appear.
After a long winter where the carnage of broken limbs, salty sidewalks and barren lawns was still to be seen, the emergence of new growth signaled it was almost over.
Spring was preparing its debut.
But the massive snowfalls and numerous snow days, and the historic unpredictability of Kansas City weather, brought doubt and skepticism even despite the new growth.
Truth be told, in my longing for winter to pass much sooner than it did, my hope grew dim. Discouragement and doubt took over and said, "Stop looking for the birds to return, and, there's no beauty in white blankets of snow."
I'd nearly lost all confidence that a change of seasons would undoubtedly come until the colorful buds appeared.
A Time for Everything
In maturity, I know there's a time for everything. I've read the wisdom of Solomon in Ecclesiastes, and I've heard this phrase woven throughout movies and renowned literature all my life.
"It's not time until it's time" the wise ones tell us. It's equally profound and provocative.
And it's great until we've been stuck in the house and shoveling snow the past four months. It's an amazing, anchoring idea until we're in a situation which we cannot control, one we hope closes out sooner than the end-in-sight appears.
In these prolonged "winter seasons" where we're barren, dry, cold and irritated, we can forget about the beauty that lies in life's natural rhythms.
Just like the signs of spring that waited to appear just a few weeks before Easter - right on time - our relief will also come when it's ready. Faith in Christ says we believe winter doesn't last forever. A new season full of new life is guaranteed. It's beautiful when it's in God's hands and we trust Him.
He won't let us down.
Just like heavy snowfalls, barren trees and wet rainfalls have their divine purposes, so does all of the suffering we endure.
Is this easy to accept? Not usually - especially when "winter" has gone on much longer than we'd like and we're cold, tired and weary.
But faith tells us to hang in there, our winter seasons won't last forever. Hope for the new green plants to bud, and for relief to arrive. Be on the lookout, because spring is coming.
Prayer: Father, soften my hardened heart in the places I've lost hope and help me persevere, trusting that signs of springtime and new blessings will appear.
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