Saturday, 2 February 2013

"Winter" days

I have often heard life compared to the changing seasons.

Spiritual life.

Every day life.

Working life.

There is the season of hope and new life, in spring.

There is growth and development in summer.

There is fruit to be harvested in the autumn.

And then, there is winter.....

There are those seasons where the cold, butter winds of life come whipping through.  Where all the life you thought was there seems to be dead.  Everything seems barren.

And then, the snow comes.  Completely obliterating anything you saw that gave any hope of life remaining.  Everything is blanketed, and smothered.

Do you ever feel like that as a wife or a mother?

I know I do.

Things are going well.  You see growth, you see things flourishing and developing.  You see the fruit of your labours.

Your efforts as wife are consistent and worthwhile.  You are doing a great job of being a wife who honours, loves and obeys her husband.  And then, that bitter wind whips in, with the harsh "snowy" effects of a bad attitude, a resistant heart, unwise words, or an unsubmissive action come in and completely blot out all the good that you had been doing.

Maybe a trial comes, that causes the same effect.  How we choose to respond to trials can bring winter to our marriage.

How about being a mother?

Oh, how the seasons seem to be so real in that role.

You see growth, development and fruit in the lives of your children.  They are growing, learning and responding to the teaching and training you seek to faithfully instil in them.

And then, like a night when you go to bed, only to waken to a heavy fall of snow - everything completely covered - so your children can one day seem to have turned a 180 degree, and all the good you saw is completely smothered.  Smothered by bad attitudes, disobedience, resistance to training, laziness, stubborn wills. You feel a despair, because the life you thought you saw seems to be gone.

Then, a new day dawns.

Poking up through the snowy landscape, there are some signs of life.

Those bulbs that I planted in the dark, dawning days of winter, are poking determinedly up through the soil, and up through the cold snow.  They were planted well, and despite the snow, their roots have gone down, and life is springing up.

So it is in our lives.  If we have taken care to plant well in the good days - when conditions are right, and timing is perfect;  if we make sure to put in what is good, and to feed it and water it with the word and prayer - then despite those wintry days, life will spring up anew.  It doesn't matter how harsh the conditions seem to be.  How cold, and dark, and dismal.  How smothered by the seemingly bad.

With hope afresh, and renewed life, the good comes through.

Growth returns.

That vitality and energy returns.

The promise of things good and new springs up.

When my days are "snowy" and "cold", I will try and remember this image - of life pushing through, despite the weather - and remember that as long as I keep planting the good, then it will push up through the harsh conditions of "winter".

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