We all go through different seasons in life. Some seasons are great while others are just tough. One worship song that has always found a way into my heart is “Seasons” by Hillsong United. This song speaks the truth that God is with us no matter the season we may be in. I don’t know what you are experiencing in your life, but I encourage you to reflect on where you are. Are you in a season of doubt, worry and fear? Many of us are with the pandemic that we are currently experiencing. Or are you in a season where you feel that things aren’t going too bad? We are all in different places, and that’s perfectly normal.
A season that I find myself in quite often is this season of doubt, worry and fear. I have a feeling that I’m not the only one who has faced this season in life. My guess is that many of you are experiencing these feelings currently. Within this season, I often times let worry define me. I allow the worry to make my own decisions and put me in a bad place mentally, physically and even spiritually. You see, mentally, all I do is think of the worst possible outcome of every situation, and it’s intimidating and exhausting. Physically, I wear my body down. And spiritually, I give up. I try to handle it all on my own because I think my ways are best and end up feeling distant from God. This season is one of my weaknesses, and it comes around for me way too often. It takes from who I am as a person and always seems to bring out the worst in me.
When I first experienced this season, I remember feeling trapped. I didn’t know how to get out, and I found it easy to shut everyone who cared out. It took me truly letting it all go to God. And it took a while before I was even ready to give all of this to God. When the moment came that I was ready, I broke down. I told God that I couldn’t do it anymore. I told God I was letting go of it all and giving it to Him. After that moment, I felt free. It was even more freeing when I eventually decided to start letting people in. I wasn’t great at it by any means, but I tried to share more of what was going on in my heart, rather than just bottling it all up. When I started letting go is when I began to feel free.
As I’m going to work in the morning, a new found habit of mine is to listen to the “Whoa that’s good!” podcast by Sadie Robertson. If you haven’t listened to it, definitely go give it a go. It offers some great advice that leaves you thinking, “Whoa that’s good!” ;). Last week, the podcast that I was listening to spoke of Sadie’s season of anxiety and fear. Someone had sent her a message on Instagram that asked how she has handled her anxiety and what techniques she uses to calm her mind. Sadie’s answer to this was Jesus. Sadie acknowledged that relaxation techniques, such as learning to breath deep in stressful situations are important, but only Jesus is the one who can truly calm the storm inside. When I heard that, I was taken back. All of these years, I tried to escape these anxious feelings by trying to find anyway possible that could calm me down and take away the anxious thoughts. I tried learning to breathe better, journaling down my thoughts, clenching and unclenching every part of my body, and while all of this helps, Jesus is truly the only One who can clear my mind. In the moments when I let go and give it to God, I always feel like I can breathe again. I’m given a peace knowing that I’m not alone. Someone is fighting this fight with me that’s a whole lot bigger than me.
Last night I was doing my devotional reading when I read over something that caught my eye. It said, “Thank Me for the very things that are troubling you. You are on the brink of rebellion, precariously close to shaking your fist in My Face. You are tempted to indulge in just a little complaining about My treatment of you. But once you step over that line, torrents of rage and self-pity can sweep you away. The best protection against this indulgence is thanksgiving. It is impossible to thank Me and curse Me at the same time. Thanking Me for trials will feel awkward and contrived at first. But if you persist, your thankful words, prayed in faith, will eventually make a difference in your heart. Thankfulness awakens you to My Presence, which overshadows your problems.” This is from the book Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. What I love about her devotional is how it speaks as if God is speaking directly to us. But oh my goodness, these are such good words for whatever season you’re in. If you’re in a season of anxiety and worry, thank God. Find the blessings in your life because thanksgiving truly does have the power to overcome what you are facing. When you have a thankful heart, you see things from a whole new perspective. You are glad, even in the suffering, because you can see the beauty of life through it all. You have hope when you’re thankful. Try being thankful for even a day, and just see how it changes your life. If you’re in a hard season, it can help you to see the good. If you’re in a great season, then life is only going to get even better. You just need Jesus and a thankful heart.
Right now, I’m in a season of transition. It’s almost time for me to move back to school, and I have no clue what it is going to bring. I could end up moving back home in two weeks if the virus gets any worse. I don’t know. None of us know. This is what I would call a season of MAJOR uncertainty. And for some of us a season of uncertainty brings about another season (the one with a lot of doubt, fear and worry). We truly don’t know what tomorrow will bring. We may end up doing online school. More people may get laid off in the workplace. We may see an increase in the number of cases. We may not. It is confusing and hard, and it can bring out the worst in us. We could be mad at God for letting all of this happen. We could be avoiding Him because of this anger and uncertainty. It’s easy to be upset when our plans don’t play out as we would’ve hoped. I definitely get angry at times. But we need to attempt to remain calm and trust. Remember that God will never leave our side.
I also encourage you all to reach out and pray for people in this time. This is a hard season for all. People are full of fear, doubt and anxiety. People are worried that their plans aren’t going to work out. I know of people who have lost amazing opportunities. Some are in a heavy financial crisis. Asking someone how they are doing could be exactly what they need. We need to be there for one another.
It’s good to remember that in each season of life, the answer is Jesus. Be thankful for where you are, even if you’re in a deep valley. Even a valley can be beautiful. You just have to look for the good.
I can see the promise
I can see the future
You’re the God of seasons
I’m just in the winter
If all I know of harvest
Is that it’s worth my patience
Then if You’re not done working
God I’m not done waiting
You can see my promise
Even in the winter
Cause You’re the God of greatness
Even in a manger
For all I know of seasons
Is that You take Your time
You could have saved us in a second
Instead You sent a child
Seasons – Hillsong United
Wherever you are, it’s worth your patience.
He changes times and seasons;
he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to those who have understanding. – Daniel 2:21