“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven…” Ecclesiasties. 3.1
I’ve seen tremendous extremes in the lives of family and friends recently: babies born and loved ones dying, jobs lost and jobs found, children conceived and pregnancies ending tragically soon, romances blooming and relationships ending, miraculous recoveries and difficult sudden diagnoses. All this occurring in a matter of weeks. What does one make of such extremes in these uncertain times?
Seeing such polar experiences playing out in the lives of people I love has weighed on my heart. I find myself overwhelmed with joy for those experiencing such rich blessings right now and deeply grieved for the others experiencing the tremendous challenges that come from living in a fallen world. All the while, God has continued to remind me of this simple truth: life is the journey from one season to the next. Situations come, circumstances go. But He never leaves us. He never forsakes us. (Deut 31.8) When we walk through those fires, He goes with us & in Him, we will not be set ablaze. When flood waters come, He will see us through to the shore. (Is. 43) Even when we feel like we’re walking blind in the valley of the shadow of death, may we remember it is only a shadow and we need not fear evil – we are simply passing through. (Ps. 23.4) In Christ, death lost its sting. (1 Cor 15.55)
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8.38-39
I don’t pretend to have life figured out, nor will I ever fully understand why people’s paths can look so different. I don’t know that I’ll ever grasp why some have healthy babies without even wanting them while others grieve for the chance to have just one of their own. Its hard to balance those who live well into their 90’s with those who are crippled by illness before their time. At this point of my life, I have so much yet to learn and stronger faith to gain. But if these 27 years have taught me anything, it is this: God is a God of love with plans to give us a hope and a future. (Jer. 29.11) Regardless of circumstances in my life, I know I am precious in His sight and because He loves me, I need not be afraid. (Is. 43.4-5) He has blessed me beyond measure. And in the hard times that have come, my frailty and desperation has allowed me to see His strength, faithfulness, and compassion in ways I would not have otherwise understood.
So take heart. If you find yourself facing an impossible situation, if you find yourself caught between an army of opposition and an immovable sea blocking your way, remember this: all of life is the journey from one season to the next. After all, we serve the God who parted the seas of impossibility to grant His children safe passage to their promised future and used the waters that once stood in their way to defeat the opposition that chased them. (Ex. 14)
“I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27.13-14