Tuesday, 22 March 2011

In every season, YOU are STILL God....

Since becoming a Christian, I have many times heard the phrases "It's a season....." or "Every thing has it's season..." concerning life and situations.
At first it kind of fascinated me, as I hadn't really thought about life and it's seasons...for me seasons very much summed up the British weather...not what a person may be going through.
But...I guess I'm now a fully fledged memeber of the seasons club, as I too find myself encouraging others with those phrases and myself too. And as I grow both in my walk with God and as a person, I appreciate the full extent of the comfort that can come from knowing that the episodes we face each day can be described as something that will indeed past...just like all the weather seasons past us by each year (yes, okay, I know Britain feels like on big winter mainly....but you get my point) so do the seasons of life.

Sometimes, life can be full of lots of "summery" seasons where everything feels nice. So for me personally this would be where my family and friends are all healthy, happy, my boys are doing well at school, we're sticking well to our budget and can even afford a sneaky take away at the end of the month, Robs job is going well and he's had some great family friendly hours, my toddler hasn't got anything stuck up his nose or in his ear and all 4 boys are actually being nice to one another...for more than an hour!

Other times in life, we may find ourselves in the "autumn or spring" seasons, where generally things are going really well, but maybe we've not quite budgeted correctly and so can't have that family day out we initially planned, or Robs had a lot of night shifts which means we don't see as much of him in a week...or month, maybe one of the boys has fallen out with a school friend or has had a minor illness like a cold or something. Generally, these seasons are okay...may have a few little rocky patches on the path of life, but we can easily shake them off and continue on...

And then we come to the "wintery" seasons of life. I sum this season up as being cold, lonely, and so testing that each day can sometimes feel like we're banging our heads on a brick wall. For me, if I'm fully honest right now I kind of feel like I'm in the middle of a wintery season in my life. Our youngest son Samuel has been quite poorly for the past month. Doctors have 3 times made a diagnosis on what they think is wrong with him...only for his body to not react well to the medications and us being back at square one. The last diagnosis from them was that he has a rare form of psoriasis and will need steroid and uv light treatment. Whilst some parts of his body are already responding well to this treatment, other parts are so sore, and inflammed and for the past two days he's had a temperature of 39 which won't shift and is very feverish, resulting in a trip ysterday to the hospital, and another one this afternoon.
Another situation we have found ourselves in, is that last Wednesday my husbands father quite unexpectedly passed away. This is a sad time for any family, but especially added to for us as most of my husbands family live in Nigeria which is obviously a far distance from us here in the UK, and our children had yet to meet their funny, loveable grand-pa who despite not knowing in person, they very much had a personal and real relationship with. Rob has flown to Nigeria to be of support and comfort to his mother and to help arrange the funeral and all the other little practicalities, but as I'm heavily pregnant I'm unable to travel with him...which mainly upsets me when I think of daddy's funeral which will take place in a couple of weeks time...I so want to be there with my family, but am unable to due to not being able to have the necessary immunistaions, etc..
I am trying to find comfort in the fact I have a very special role to fulfill here to our 4 boys and unborn baby, but sometimes...you want to be more than just the mum who keeps things going, sometimes you want to be just yourself and in this case hold the hand of your husband as he deals with his fathers death....

So, those are the main reasons that right now my life feels quite winterish, and I'd be lying if I said it doesn't makes you want to hide under your duvet for the rest of the year and come out when the "summery" season arrives....but I can't do this, for the real obvious reasons of having responsibility but mainly because when I look around me, I very much see God everywhere in my life...all over every situation we're in. Its hard at some moments to fully trust that His plans are indeed taking place right now in this instance because I'm human and can't help that natural thought process...but I know His plans are very real. Even if I felt like giving up, I couldn't, because there is a being who is so much stronger than me that supports my back and says "Stace...I'm with you, I'm for you, I'm in you...you can do this my daughter!" I love my Jesus so much, and I know and believe that when He died for me (and you) that He didn't do that so that we would hide under our duvets and not cope with the "wintery" seasons of life, He done that because He knew that after every "wintery" season we would still be whole and strong enough to see and appreciate the bright, beautiful warm summery sun when things are well. It's so easy to thank God when all is good in life...but right now I stand strong and thank Him that despite the hurt and tears and tiredness that I have Him to trust and He does carry me through. I thank Him that my father-in-law despite all his stubborn ways, has a very real relationship with Jesus and so is now having a blast in heaven. I thank Him that Samuel is alive and so beautiful and is my baby boy and is getting good care...watching Comic relief last wek made me realise how lucky we are, when some parents can't even afford 35 pence in some countries to catch a bus to the hospital for their child to be seen! I thank Him for my other 3 children, my friends who have been a huge encouragement, my home comforts, my church, my ministry teams, His GRACE and LOVE for me!!!

So, please...let this be an encouragement to you that we all go through seasons and whichever one you find yourself in, that you will and can come through it, head held high, feeling, knowing and believing stronger in yourself, in God and in His plans. Don't hide behind those dark shades, acting like life is one big summer for you, when in fact you feel like your constantly banging your head against a wall....what's the point..? Seriously, think about it...what's the point? I have the pleasure and privlege of serving God in in ministry and know by being real and honest and trusting, that other people are then able to share and overcome their trials and pasts...think about who in your life could benefit from you being real and honest. And if you are genuinely in a summery season of life, don't be scared either to share that with those around you...HOPE is something we all need and want...let your examples shine through to those who are nearly in that summery period with you.
In all things, in every season we give thanks, beacuse God is very much with us and doesn't change His ways or HIs promises over our lives...in every season He is still God...

"And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose!" Romans 8:28

Have a truly blessed day xxx