Cedar Rapids is nicknamed the “City of Five Seasons“, for the “fifth season“, which is time to enjoy the other four. I hope you are taking time to enjoy the seasons you are in right now. The most notable one, for me, is leaf season, where leaves are changing color, falling, blowing into the yard and eventually raked or cleared away. Autumn is usually my favorite season, and this year is exceptional with some wonderful warm days to enjoy before the cold sets in. We are also in the thick of Football season, as Basketball season is just starting. As I write, there is much anticipation as the Major League baseball season ends tonight with the culmination in game 7 of the World Series. In the morning, there will be one group of fans elated with the victory, and one discouraged for what might have been…so close. Whether or not you care at all about sports, often there are just as many highs as lows in life, just as there will be simultaneous rejoicing and mourning at the end of tonight’s game. Where do you find yourself?
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot. Ecclesiastes 3:1-2
Similar to sports, the seasons in our life tend to overlap and blend into each other a bit as well. There are joys and challenges in each season. Whether that is just as you progress in age from infancy to childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, middle age, and into the Golden Years, or as your life situations change. There are seasons with children and without them, including grandchildren. There are different seasons based on the jobs you have or where you are living and going to school. There are seasons of growth and prosperity, and seasons of loss, including the death of our loved ones. Again, many of these events may happen close together, but as time goes on and when we step back, we may get a bigger perspective on our lives. We can also start to see God’s influence and how He has been shaping our lives and using different situations in life to help us grow and become more like Him, at times reluctantly.
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Romans 12:15
Whether you are rejoicing, mourning, or indifferent as the day starts today, be aware of those around you and where they may be in the different seasons of their lives. Engage in ways that build others up and encourage them in their walk with God, or share your experiences, especially if they have not been walking with Him. The closer we walk with the Lord, the more He helps us understand and fully live out the seasons in our lives. As you interact with those around you, let your joy be evident to all. The joy that comes, not from temporary things, but from eternal things, from the presence of Christ in your life. Whatever seasons you find yourself encountering now, may you live them to the fullest with those around you and Christ living through you!
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:2-3
Strength and Courage in Christ,