The following was published on Feb 17 in the PG Citizen in the Clergy Comment column. Two days after publication I fell and broke my knee, kicking off a season of rest and recovery. I definately need to take my own words to heart.
The changing of seasons is something that I often reflect on. Some changes of season are fairly evident, others are subtler and often missed until well after the fact. Our family recently began a new season when we packed up the house we’d called home for over 5 years in Metro Vancouver and drove here to Prince George. This season had a definite start as we arrived here one evening in September, after a day of driving and though we had woken in our “old house” we went to bed in our “new house” and a new adventure had begun.
As the days progressed and we began to find our way around our new home we noticed the change of summer giving way to fall and then fall giving way to winter. We enjoyed watching the subtle changes, the colour of the leaves, the earlier sunset and of course the green of the grass being blanketed in the white of snow. At times it seemed each day brought something new. Perhaps we took more notice of the changes this year because it was the first time our first year in the North, but I am glad we were able to take time to notice the changes.
Life is full of seasons, and every season will have its own joys and sorrows, excitements and challenges. As it says in the opening verse of Ecclesiastes chapter 3 “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens” The words that follow are known to many as the lyrics of that 1965 hit song by The Byrds “Turn! Turn! Turn!” and serve as a great reminder that there will be a season for everything and we must, at times, slow down and recognize the season we are in and that it will pass.
Just this week, as I was about to head out to run the snow-blower over the driveway once again, I saw my father had posted pictures of the first flower popping up in the family garden. I’ve also learned that many folks here leave their snow shovels behind and flee to Mexico or other warm places, to simply escape the chill of our northern winter. Now, it can be tempting to hasten the move from one season of life, or to try and avoid it completely. It can be hard to see others in a place we want to be whether you’re single and wish to be married, childless longing for a child, a parent longing for the empty nest, a student longing to graduate and get a job or shoveling a driveway and longing for Mexico, but we must always ask ourselves, what might God be trying to teach us in this season and what might I miss by avoiding it?.