Beauty in Its Time

devotional, springtime, seasons, time, patience, waiting

I have lived in the Midwest of the United States my entire life. We experience all four seasons, but it usually goes something like this: 5-6 months of Winter, 2-3 weeks of Spring, 4-5 months of Summer, and 2-4 weeks of Fall. By the time the extreme months of Winter and Summer are over, we get to enjoy the mild temperatures for less than a month most years. 

I have to admit, Winter is my least favorite season and out of all the seasons, and in the Midwest, it is the longest. I wait for Spring to come with great expectation, but come January, I am usually growing extremely impatient and ready to pack my bags and move our family to somewhere much warmer!

But, just like the year before, the temperature begins to slowly climb, buds begin to form on the trees, and the grass and plants begin to come back to life and show those vibrant green colors. Soon enough, fresh leaves are fully covering what were barren branches and flowers are in full bloom, welcoming us into Spring once again. I never have to worry if the seasons are going to change because they always do; God is a master artist like that and has it all under control. 

Just like seasons are set to a specific time that God ordains, so are events in our life, and on an even bigger scale, our journey with Him as it unfolds. Only He knows how to take a rebellious heart of stone and transform it into a heart of flesh that praises His Holy name. This profound reality of God forming a life into one who learns how to deny self and worship the Lord is not an overnight event. No, just like seasons change in their own time, the change of a life for the glory of Christ is a process. In God’s perfecting timing, we will begin to see the transformation. 

Ecclesiastes is a book in the Bible written by one of the wisest men to live, King Solomon. In this book, Solomon discusses the ebb and flow of life: time, foolishness, suffering, and wisdom are some of the topics that are poetically unwrapped throughout this Old Testament book. 

Chapter 3 of Ecclesiastes focuses on the concept of time in the heart of man. Verse 11 explains to us that God is the holder of time and specifically that “He has made everything beautiful in its time” (11a). The verse goes on to say that God “has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end” (Ecclesiastes 11b, NIV). 

Often times, as humans, we become extremely discouraged when we fail or when we think we should be further along than we are, but God is continually working in our hearts and in our lives, and the process of conforming us to the image of His dear Son rests solely in His hands as we lean not on our own understanding, but trust completely in Him and His ways (Proverbs 3:5-6).

With the help of the Holy Spirit, we learn to walk in obedience. He leads us into all truth as we study the Word and renew our mind to replace old ways of thinking with God’s perfect will. 

Perhaps this process of renewing our mind and seeing transformation in behavior and attitude is slowed down because our eyes become too fixated on cares of this life and the temporal.

Our hearts were made to look to the hope in eternity, but if we are not careful, we can be consumed with worry when things are not changing as quickly as we would like them to or when our circumstances in our life are challenging or uncomfortable.

Soon we are trying to control things that go on in our life and forget to ask the Lord for His help or even acknowledge that He may be using all that may be difficult in our life to work for our good and turn it all into something beautiful. 

Do you feel like you are stuck in a “winter” season in your life and are longing to see blooms of new life?

Take those concerns to the Lord today in prayer. Write down the worries that are weighing you down and surrender them to God.

dOnly He is able to make things beautiful in its time. Don’t lose hope…Springtime is just around the corner!

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