Physically where I live we are in winter – a cooler quieter time where even the trees seem to hibernate. Their roots are frozen in the ground and the deciduous trees appear to be dead. Sap, the source of vitality for the tree, is not running. This season prepares us for the glorious beauty of spring. However, we still need to go through winter to arrive at spring.
In reflecting, I appreciate a number of things about winter. I enjoy the sun shining off the snow, the sparkle on the trees and getting out and walking and cross country skiing in trees. At the same time as we near the end of November I start thinking that we only have to get through December, January and February, plus the days start to get longer at Christmas and that it usually doesn’t get really cold in March!
When we have a winter that is usually around five months long it feels like we don’t really have four seasons. One of the standard jokes is that we have two seasons, winter and construction! I think that those orange signs that crop up every spring are protest signs, you know the ones when you near the end of one of the seemly endless road construction projects, ‘End Construction.’
In a similar vein let’s reflect on our hearts. I know for many we have dealt with a seemingly endless season of Covid restrictions, limited social contact, disrupted worship, loss of ‘normalcy’ and other related impacts. It has become very wearying and we are in a place where many of our hearts are crying out in protest, ‘End Covid.’
Yet while we pray and wait it seems wise to consider what He is seeking to accomplish in our hearts in this season. This heart season has created an opportunity for reflection. An opportunity to rest in Him as we wait or the beauty of spring. We can be assured that change will come. The issue is how we will have changed through this process. I know I have a deeper appreciation for the privilege of gathering with others to worship, pray for one another and draw from His word and presence. My goal is not to get back to normal, it is to draw closer to Him and learn to better carry His presence in this season and out from this season. Prepared for His purpose.
Below are some encouraging verses to strengthen us in this season.
23 Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life. Proverbs 4:23 (NKJV)
8 When You said, “Seek My face,” My heart said to You, “Your face, LORD, I will seek.” Psalm 27:8 (NKJV)
14 Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD! Psalm 27:14 (NKJV)
6 My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:26 (NKJV)