There is an occasion for everything, and a time for every activity under heaven:
a time to give birth 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 throw stones and a time to gather stones;
a time to embrace and a time to avoid embracing;
a time to search and a time to count as lost;
a time to keep and time to throw away;
a time to tear and time to sew;
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.Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
It snowed last night. In case you need a time stamp, today is October 21, 2020. Where I live in the Canadian prairies, Winter is more of a lifestyle than a season. It knows no bounds and will sometimes descend on us as early as September and last alllll the way to May.
Normally when I see the snow invade my peaceful fall, I get pretty upset. I’ve been living here for 12 years and I’m still not used to these long, brutal winters. I hate driving in the snow here because it’s nothing like the heavy wet slush I was used to back on the east coast.
But this year, when I saw the snow falling and was faced with the reality that we are truly entering the hardest months of what will probably be one of the hardest years, another thought came into my mind.
This is not a mistake. This is not some kind of unfortunate event. I think I’ve spent most of my life believing that weather just happens to us, not that it is intended for us. If I am going to truly believe that the God I serve is in control of all nature then I have to relent that the seasons are in his perfect timing.
This is not some unfortunate event that makes us “unlucky”, this is a divine act of God that tells us that we are held. We are held by the God who knew that on exactly October 20, 2020 my particular part of the world needed snow. For whatever reason our season had to change. And rather than lamenting the work of the Lord, I need to change the posture of my heart to figure out what this changing of season means for my heart.
Am I fighting for control? Am I envious of better climates? Am I hoping for something that won’t be realized? Am I falling back into feelings and actions of fear and pain from before I truly understood the gravity of my salvation and lived according to my own flesh?
The fact of the matter is that God puts us in seasons at the exact right moment. Where you are today is no accident. Wherever you are, whoever you’re with, whatever you are doing, he has something for you here. No time or season or occasion is ever wasted with God. Whatever our circumstances, we have an opportunity to seek out the heart of God and share that with the people around us.
If this isn’t a metaphor of 2020 I don’t know what is. The situation that we now find ourselves in, as a second wave of Covid-19 hits the world, can feel like an unexpected snow storm that throws a wrench in all your plans. But if we can look at the reason why God has placed us here, in this exact moment in history – remembering that we know that God works all things together for the good of those who love him and can use for his glory what the enemy intends for our harm – we will be able to take on any season.