To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven (Eccles 3:1)
This passage came to me a few years ago as I relish the beauty of the autumn leaves whilst out walking and riding back on my bicycle, listening to worship music, basking in the fresh air and contemplating if I am too old to check out the fun fair nearby. I must be experiencing a spiritual season of autumn, I thought, producing new leaves of varying colours, brown, red, yellow – the beauty of nature!. That’s why I love the outdoors. For me it is a spiritual experience drawing me closer to God, releasing my inner child …walking, dancing, running, cycling, singing, waving my hands in the air; no I am not crazy, I am just praising my God.
And then I thought…. that even though each season bring varying experiences, I needed to appreciate them for both the joys and the pains as it is through these that I’ve experienced new beginnings.
BUT after autumn comes winter, I wondered. And as I am relating this to my personal spiritual experience, I want to believe that the spiritual seasons does not necessarily match up to the earthly ones and so for me Summer is in view.
Incidentally the song that was playing then via my MP3 player was ‘If Not For Your Grace’ with the words:
Where would I be if not for your grace
carrying me through every season
Grace that restores. Grace that redeems, Grace that releases me to worship. Grace that repairs
visions and dreams, Grace that releases miracles.
(Israel & New Breed)
So I want to thank God for this season that is transforming me, producing new leaves of varying colours and for His grace that has and will continue to restore, redeem, release me to worship Him; grace that will repair my visions and dreams and releases miracles for this new season in my life!
The fact that you and I are alive today, breathing the breath of God, we are blessed. We may look around us and see a lack of good governance and big public spending of some sort, economies and healthcare systems in a state of dis-repair, but the truth of the matter is about us as children of God is that, all things are working together for our good. The realization of how blessed we all are comes not through what we can see with our natural eyes, it is through the eyes of faith that we are able to experience the richness and the fullness of His grace. I dare you to believe like never before that God is working all things out for your good and for His glory. Indeed, you and I were born to be blessed!
The Apostle Paul reminds us of this in Ephesians 1: 3 -4.
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight…”
Be encouraged….in the midst of all the stress, strife and discouragement… be reminded that….this is your finest moment!
For only with fire is gold. We learn from the hardships and upsets of life. If everything comes easy, then we’ll never learn to deal with the disasters when they inevitably arrive.
So don’t worry about your future. God knows you completely, accepts you unconditionally and loves you wholeheartedly. You can trust Him
Today I resumed my early morning rising for some quiet time. At times it takes a challenge to propel you forward into God’s presence and then you truly realise that better is one day in his presence than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:10 paraphrased)
Here’s another word of encouragement for those who are waiting for direction or an answer from God.
Isaiah 40:30- 31 states,
“Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
and the young men
shall utterly fall:
But they that wait
upon the LORD
they shall mount up
with wings as eagles;
they shall run,
and not be weary;
[and] they shall walk,
and not faint.”
The song I was listening to this morning which also encouraged me is by Marvin Sapp – ‘Not Now Doesn’t Mean Never’ . Just be patient for at the appointed time, at the right place and in the right season, you’re change will come and you will rise with wings like eagles.
Just keep praising Him.
Take an example from the greatest Psalmist ever. In times of distress David was not afraid to cry out to God.
“Give me a sign of your goodness, that my enemies may see it and be put to shame, for you, O Lord, have helped me and comforted me.” Psalm 86: 17
For those of us who are struggling with one issue or another, be reminded that you are blessed.
Looking at his disciples, he said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are you who hunger now,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
when they exclude you and insult you
and reject your name as evil,
because of the Son of Man.
“Rejoice in that day and leap for joy,because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.
“But woe to you who are rich,
for you have already received your comfort.
Woe to you who are well fed now,
for you will go hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will mourn and weep.
Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you,
for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.
When you feel like giving up, trust Him.In this season He is preparing you for Himself. Just trust His plan. He is saying to you ‘I understand’.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin. (Hebrews 4:15)
Hagar referred to him as You-Are-The-God Who-Sees; for she said, “Have I also here seen Him who sees me?” (Genesis 16:13)
And the best part of it is that you’ll emerge stronger, better and wiser; you’ll discover the best in you and to those who could have help but didn’t, who saw your tears , your struggles BUT just didn’t want to know, you’ll be able to sing
Why I am saying all this? To be honest, today I’m just trying to encourage myself. So whatever you are going through, don’t quit, don’t give up. Listen to this testimony by Smoky Norful entitled Dear God. I also love this quote by Wintley Phipps. It’s one of my favourites and one I use to encourage myself.
“It’s in the quiet crucible of your personal, private sufferings… that your noblest dreams are born… and God’s greatest gifts are given… in compensation for what you’ve been through…”
I hope you have been encouraged.
Let me end with this poem from my friend Da Stealth Preacha entitled Decisions? Decisions?
Not sure where this road is leading
So to You, my Lord, I am pleading
To guide me in the path I must take
So that Your heart I do not break
As Lord, I do not know
Which way I should go
At this fork in the road
This decision is like a heavy load
Bearing down on my heart
And clouding my path
So on You Lord I am leaning
To give this life meaning
As Your Word is the light
That gives me the sight
To see the Way I should follow
Even when I do not know where I go
For I trust in You so completely
To lead me securely
In the path of Your righteousness
To reveal Your Holiness
And to show the world Your glory
As You uphold me
So thank You, my Father
For I know You take me further
Than I could go all alone
As You have adopted me as Your own
© Copyright Tuesday 4th December 2012 O’Quo-Charlz Uvieghara “Da Stealth Preacha”
(Words taken from God Family & Career, Alpha Western Cape (Nicky Gumbel), Chuka Dieobi FB statuses, my previous blog entitled ‘To everything there is a season (re-edited) and passages of scriptures as indicated)