A Change of Seasons

Photo by Junanne Mosley

Monday night I was a mad woman.  I jumped in the car after MNBS (Monday Night Bible Study) and I was mad.  I couldn’t figure out why so I decided to be mad at my husband first.  Sounds reasonable right?  I’ve been mad at him a lot lately and really he hasn’t deserved it.  So I had a little yelling/praying session where I asked God what was wrong with me and why was I so mad?  Then I wiped my tears so I could go into Wmart.

Okay, what was really going on here?  It really is more than the topic at the MNBS although that was the proverbial straw on the camel’s back.   It was more than having a week with a schedule crazy enough to drive anyone mad.  After all, we moms have weeks such as these all the time.

No, this madness has been a long time brewing.  I’ve been feeling it on and off.  I’ve thought about what it represented.  It doesn’t always show itself as madness.  Sometimes its sadness, emptiness, tiredness, even loneliness.  Sometimes it is vagueness, quietness, and stillness.  How many more “nesses” can I come up with here?

The straw was a discussion about our passions.   This conversation was about what acts of service do we enjoy so much that we would do them for free?  What floats your boat?  Knocks your socks off?   These acts of service in whatever form they take usually energize you and fill your thoughts and give you something to look forward to.   You get to use your gifts to bless others.  We shared these.  In a large group of women we had some pretty amazing gifts shared.  Without getting into the specifics there were women who liked to heal, create, organize, talk, listen, help, implement, teach, love, and serve.

I really struggled with this lesson.  I didn’t even want to go because I knew what the topic was.  BC basically guilted me into going and that is one reason I picked him to be mad at.  I didn’t really want to share my passions because I feel so far away from them right now.  Finally, at the very end our teacher summed up my feelings.  She shared we aren’t always living in a time of passion.  We sometimes go through seasons where we doubt and feel down and aren’t energized.  She shared that Satan feeds those thoughts to make us feel less than adequate and keep us from blessing others.

I’m telling you this is exactly where I am right now.  I’m in a season.  I’ve very often referred to it as a season of rest and I think rest is a good thing.

I’ve just come off of 5-7 years of being involved in some type of time consuming project or another.

These projects have mostly centered around PTA and developing a curriculum at our previous church.  Both required time and energy, but I was able to use my gifts.  I enjoyed the results and the creative aspects of the activities.

These two projects along with taking one of those surveys where you figure out what your spiritual gift is have led me to understand some things I’m good at and some things I’m not so good at.

If something needs to be done, I’ll step up to get it done and often lead by example.  However, I don’t have the gift of leadership in the truest sense.  I’m not usually the visionary that has the big plan.  I’m more the creating, implementing type.  I’m an administrator.  Give me the idea and I can help you put together the logistics of it.

I found I burned myself out because I tried to do everything and be everything.  Even the stuff I wasn’t good at.  If your energy isn’t coming from God and your timing isn’t God’s timing then acts both with your gifts and outside of your gifts will not be rewarding.

One woman mentioned that as her role is changing she is finding she needs something else to keep her hands busy because she loves to work with her hands.  I somehow feel a need to do something or be in charge of something.  However, I’m in this resting period because I need it.  Maybe I shouldn’t be trying to jump into something else just because I feel the urge.

While I’m in this resting period, I will continue to do the work God has already given me to do.  I heard a Mary Kay Sales Director say on a tape I used to listen to that she had thoughts of changing the direction in her life, but until God gave her clarity of direction she would continue doing the work on the path He had already set her on.  God has already given clear instruction about my role as a wife, parent, and employee.  I will continue with my current roles until they end and others begin.

My frustration is partly due to not having a current project that I’m excited about.  However, I don’t think that the only service we are to do is just the service we get excited about.  Ask Abraham and Moses about this one.  Sometimes you just have to do the small daily things God has given you to do and not live your whole life looking for a mountain top moment.

Is it possible some of the things I’ve said “yes” to were roadblocks God wanted me to go around, not pick up and carry?  These things take my energy and then I don’t have any left for the other things God does want me to do.

Maybe I should quit something.  Did I use the four letter “q” word?  I’ve never quit anything in my life.  It has to die or I have to move to get out of it.   While I’m still filling roles in some areas I think I’ve learned it might be wise to say “no” to others.  This might be especially true if it isn’t a passion.

One woman shared how much she would love to serve in one area, but there was joking that she couldn’t do that because she was already working in another.  This cut me deep and hit too close to home.  I myself feel stuck in an area I don’t really feel excited about but when they asked I said “yes.”   Let us encourage each other to get involved in areas that do excite us.  She might be getting worn out in the first area while she could be getting energized and giving energy and blessings to others from serving in another.

I guess the bottom line comes to this for me:  I was mad because I was not doing what I wanted to do and it wasn’t the season I wanted it to be.  Pray that I will get over it and allow God to lead me through the season.

“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:

a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

…I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live…and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God.  I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it.”

Ecclesiastes 3:1-9

There is also a time for the ground to rest and a time to refrain from doing so in that time of silence and stillness God can speak and I can hear.

What is your season?

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