Ecclesiastes 3:1 says “For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” Not only do seasons happen with our climate, they also happen in our lives. At certain times of our life we are in school. Other times we are newlyweds. Later we’ll be in retirement. It is very normal and very right that we experience certain things at certain times.
Motherhood is like that. There are seasons of diapers. Seasons of times tables. Seasons of ball games. And seasons where we’ll adapt to an empty nest. I think that knowing our season and living it to the fullest will help us see above the daily grind and will give us perspective we sometimes lack when we’re in the thick of it.
Why is it important to embrace your season?
(1) You’ll know when and when not to plant. Depending on what you are growing, there are seasons to plant and seasons to harvest. If you try to plant certain foods in the winter the cold temperatures will either prevent their growth entirely or kill them. When you are staying at home with 3 children under the age of 5, this might not be the time to start a ministry at your church. Unless it’s a children’s ministry… then it may be the perfect time. After a layoff might not be the right time to go all out and open up your own business. Or it may be the perfect time. If your family spends time in prayer and truly knows the season they are in and embraces it, they won’t plant seeds that will ultimately go to waste.
(2) You’ll know what to expect. I grew up in Florida. Though it is a mild climate, I never expected beach friendly temperatures in February. Why? Because it’s winter in February. I didn’t make big plans to go to the beach house and promise all my closest friends a good burn. That would have been silly. However, we often do that to ourselves when we don’t correctly identify our season of motherhood. It’s okay to step down from various leadership positions. It’s all right if you have to back out of a few clubs you were once active in. If you expect you’ll be able to do everything you always did as well as you always did and still get things done at home you are probably wrong. Or if you’re right, give us the number of your hired help. Having irrational expectations leads to disappointment and disillusionment.
(3) You’ll be able to persevere. I pretty much hate cold weather. I lived in the UK for two and a half years and, at times, had to physically put my hand over my mouth just to stop myself from complaining about the grey skies and constant drizzle. Because my favorite things to do require heat and sunshine, I found it altogether depressing. However, I was able to persevere because our plans were moving us to warmer and sunnier climes. I knew that. Because I knew the season we were in I was able to persevere. In fact, in the last few months before we moved I actually enjoyed a Scottish winter filled with freezing temperatures and snow. In this season of your life, maybe you don’t get to see your friends as much. Perhaps you’ve gone out to eat as much this entire year as you did in one month a while back. Maybe all your fancy clothes are gathering mothballs in storage. If you know that your current season is special and will not last forever (whether you like it or not) then you can persevere and push through the hard days.
(4) You’ll have hope. When times feel dire and desperate and you are tired and weary and wondering how the heck you can make it another day, you can take hope. I believe God created seasons because He knows our capacity. I often hear it said that it’s “always darkest before the dawn.” There have been many a time in my life where I thought I was literally going to lose it. And then, all of a sudden, I laughed. I laughed because I knew that it honestly couldn’t get much worse so somehow – someway – God was going to show up and He was going to do it soon. And He always did.
Winter will end. Spring will come. Spring will turn into Summer and Summer will transition into Fall. You can’t push it or pull it. You can run around the world trying to stay in your favorite season, but you’ll have to run forever. Things do come and they do go and that is okay. The key is to be content where you are when you are there. Bloom where you’re planted, as they say. Though they look different, each season has plants and flowers that are suited to survival.