by Barbara Latta
After a cold winter, spring has arrived in full force. New growth, beautiful blooms, and warm weather invite people to get outside and soak up some sunshine.
Last week, Ken and I stumbled upon two festivals where the landscape was decorated with a rainbow of color as acres and acres of ground was covered in tulips.
The creativity of God showed out.
Other than tropical and arctic climates, the world endures changing seasons, and each range has a purpose.
Earthly seasons can teach us how to withstand the challenges of life. We go through transitions, but they don’t always bring circumstances we like. But when we learn to lean on our Creator as the gardener of our soul, we can learn from these seasons when we follow His directions for nourishing the soil of our hearts.
Spring bursts with freshness and new growth. Bulbs like tulips and daffodils raise their tender heads through the soil. Trees sprout young leaves and grow longer branches. But Spring also can form frequent thunderstorms and hard rain beats the blooms to the ground.
In our spiritual development, we may be enjoying fresh vision from scripture, the beginning of a Bible study, or discipling a baby Christian. When the thrill of new spiritual adventures wanes, threats form like thunderclouds and we can feel beat up like the crushed petals.
After storms flowers soak up the moisture and perk back up. When we face the wind of despair after a spiritual victory, this is when we should refuse to give up. If we continue to soak up living water into our souls, we will not be crushed.
We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair (2 Corinthians 4:8 NKJV).
Summer brings rising temperatures. The spring shoots are gone, but summer blooms abound with color.
Plants such as lantana and marigolds can resist the hotter weather. As the months pass, the summer flowers that are able to survive the sun’s blaze begin to fade. We can get weary of daily watering and the beauty we enjoyed at the beginning of the season no longer brings joy.
Our summer season can be daily routines. The opportunities we enjoyed in our spring season grew to full bloom. We enjoyed the next step we took, but the temptation to become accustomed to the spiritual garden that sprouted can sneak in like weeds. Day to day lifestyle becomes dry, and boredom beats us down like the hot summer sun attacks plants.
This is when we should remember that our Father is faithful, and we need to keep our eyes on the prize of following Him. The Holy Spirit continues to work through the ordinary.
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart (Galatians 6:9).
Autumn is a time of transition as the plants wither and fade, the trees stop producing chlorophyll. This causes the leaves to die, change color, and fall to the ground. But the dead leaves transform into beautiful colors that we enjoy. We would like to hold on to this beauty, but because the plants are dead, they must be released or new germination will not occur in the spring.
We can become so attached to accomplishments or places of knowledge with God that we want to stay where it is comfortable. We don’t want to let go of what is familiar. But to expand and receive new levels of inspiration, we must follow the Creator’s leading and release the previous cycle we enjoyed. We can’t go forward if we hold on to the present.
This is the time to step out in faith and obey the Lord’s leading for a direction we may not have been before.
Enlarge the place of your tent, and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; Do not spare: Lengthen your cords, and strengthen your stakes (Isaiah 54:2).
Winter is a time where everything looks empty. The trees are bare, and the flowers have disappeared. But despite appearances, the forest is not dead. Inside the trees, the next harvest is asleep waiting for nature’s call to wake up and sprout again.
This could be the time we feel the Spirit is silent. We pray, study, and read but feel empty. But our time is not wasted or dead.
As we remain faithful to feed our souls with the holy Word no matter what emotions tell us, the Spirit inside us stirs to bring new discovery when the time is right.
Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:6).
As Titus 2 women, we have all experienced these different seasons in our spiritual journey. When our soul is nourished by the seed of God’s Word, we will grow an abundant bouquet that provides joy and beauty to the generations who come after us. We can leave a legacy of blooms.
What revelation have you gained from the seasons of your life? Share your thoughts.