It’s snowing outside.
Shauna, my lovely wife, loves the snow. The first snowfall transforms her from a regular housewife into a Disney Princess. The other day, when the first flakes made their appearance, she pranced down the stairs and announced winter’s arrival just like she did when she was five. Her eyes sparkled, deep and magical, as though the snowfall were really fairy dust and had ushered in a new era of joy and wonder.
I hate the snow. I hate winter. I hate scraping stubborn blobs of ice from my windshield. I hate draughts of cold air plunging down my jacket’s neckline. I hate wearing mittens. I hate driving stiffly, as though hunching forward keeps me warmer while the car warms up. I hate slippery roads, hate the gravel they sprinkle like a layer of windshield killing granola over every roadway in the city.
But the summer season is gone, gone, gone. So is autumn. Instead, I’m left coping with their frost-bitten sister, old lady Winter. The turning tide has me thinking about seasons, both good and bad. We move through seasons in our marriages, our parenting, our walk with God.
“You’re always in a season,” Bill Hybels quips. “Do yourself… the favour of learning to spot the changing of the seasons in your environment. When you see growth bloom or transition hit or feel the icy days of malaise descend, draw attention to the shift. Give voice to the realities of that season. Assign appropriate language to it, designate helpful parameters to succeeding within it… you’re always in a season… it’s your role to know which it is and what to do about it.” (from Hybel’s book, Axiom).
He’s right. So let’s give it some thought. What kind of season are you in? Name it. For me, the word “stretching” comes to mind. I’m being stretched like never before.
Now let’s add another element: asking God about it. “Father, what kind of season do you think I’m in? What do you want me to know about it?”
“Breakthrough,” I sense him say. Hmmm.
Apparently sometimes what we call winter, he calls glory.