Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding; he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him
January has never been my favorite month. Gray, leaden skies above brown, barren fields. Cold that seeps into my bones and wind that steals my breath. Putting away my beloved Christmas décor with no festive holiday on the immediate horizon. Shakespeare got it so right when he described the “winter of our discontent.”
In my younger years, I would greet the new year with a dewy-eyed enthusiasm that offset the bleakness of this winter month, eager at the prospect of a blank new year stretching before me. But this year in particular, despite the relief many felt at swapping to a new calendar, January has just meant more of the same. More disease. More death. More disunity. More distance. More depression. Looking around, it’s easy to feel hopeless and disillusioned, stuck in a never-ending cycle of despair and tedium.
And yet. Yet! When I look out my window at the dead flower beds and brown grass, I know that it’s only a matter of time before they will be bursting with life and color. Because I have experienced many winters before, many seasons of cold and bleakness, I know that spring is on its way. That life and beauty are just lying dormant underneath the desolate, barren landscape. This season is not forever.
God, thank you for giving us seasons and rhythms of life. Thank you that no matter what season we find ourselves in, You are there, holding us close, whispering words of love and encouraging us to grow. Show us Your beauty and grace and give us peace.
My relationship with God goes through seasons as well. At times I am flourishing, growing in knowledge, grace and understanding. Other times, my faith seems more dormant as I wait, listen and trust. I’m grateful that, even though the landscape of my heart can change, God is unchanging. He knows the time and the season. Each season has a purpose and is part of His plan. Spring would be less miraculous, less spectacular, if winter had not been so bleak.
What season are you in? What is lying dormant within you, waiting for the warmth and light of God’s love to bring forth? What are you grateful for today, in your current season?
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