Fall is the season of football games, pumpkins, and hayrides. What fall activities do you enjoy the most? Aren’t you thankful for the changing of the seasons? Each season contains its own unique characteristics and activities. It helps provide a rhythm to your years and new adventures to anticipate. While I hope you are enjoying fall now, I bet you are also anticipating the coming of winter. Winter involves being home earlier, fireplaces, hot cocoa, and the holidays. We make it through blustery days of winter by anticipating the coming spring. Spring involves the warming of the temperatures which bring our flowers, trees, and grasses back to life. New life resurrects again and the browns of winter give way to the many colors of spring. Spring yields to the increased heat of summer. Though some may complain about the heat of summer, what would our year be like if there wasn’t the heat of summer? Hot evenings at a ball field or fun days at the pool fill our lives. I love late summer evenings and fresh garden produce.
Notice how we anticipate and embrace the highlights and changes of the next season. We understand with our yearly calendar the truth of the famous verse from Ecclesiastes, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (3:1). But let’s apply this same principle to our lives. Our lives pass through seasons as well. These are not as short as a calendar season, but they still go by quickly. You can break down the seasons of your life into small segments of years or in large chucks. For example, you can talk about the youth season, which really is divided into preschool, elementary, middle-school, and high-school seasons. Then you move into your young adult season of life. For many the next season involves marriage and then children. Then you enjoy the season of raising your children. Then comes a time when your children leave your home and you experience empty-nest. You may be going through a season of extended care-giving for your parents. We often look at retirement and being a grand-parent as seasons of our life.
We understand the calendar seasons and the life seasons, but do we handle the life seasons like we do the calendar ones? Do we anticipate the coming of a new season of our life? Do we consider the new opportunities and possibilities it will provide? Sadly, many times we fear the new season of life. We fail to embrace the changes that come with the new. We tend to cling to the old season, focusing on the happiness and comfort we have found with it. Let’s realize that “for everything there is a season.” Let’s enjoy the present season, let it go when it passes, and move forward to the new opportunities and possibilities of the new season. We will be much better off for it! So go enjoy fall, but anticipate winter. Both will have their blessings and challenges. But you will get through them both much better if you live in the present!