Moving in His Season
Pastor In Willow, Alaska
"My beloved spake and said unto me, Rise up, my love,
my fair one, and come away. For lo, the winter is past, the
rain is over and gone" Song of Solomon2:10,11.
Having experienced the past eleven winters in Alaska, I
have learned to appreciate the inference to winter in this
passage as never before. Sub zero temperatures that break
the branches off trees, dangers of frostbite, storms depositing
several feet of snow, high winds that leave destruction in
their paths, the "chinooks" which bring warmer temperatures
that lead to rain and icy conditions, and the darkness that
prevails, with few daylight hours.
But it is not the winter of nature that I want to emphasize.
In the spiritual realm, God allows us to enter a season of
adversity, dreariness and seemingly spiritual decline where
we cry out for more of Him. As the tree whose sap dries up,
we feel our strength gone. The storms may battle against us
yet we remain steadfast in His love.
He is watering His precious seed during the assaults and
extremes of the season. Faith is being built in us. We learn
to rest and trust Him, that life will spring forth again.
He is the essence that sustains the waiting soul.
And spring does come in all its glory! He invites us to
partake and "come away." Now we move more quickly,
and suddenly our activities in God take form. A new beginning,
after our having lain dormant in the plan of God, moves upward
and onward. We are energized and refreshed with the newness
of the season. "The singing of birds is come." A
song of praise and hope is in our heart.
Summer produces the faith seeds of fall, and the sowing
of spring. Hope has taken on a reality in the intense heat
of this time. Growth is evident now. We are fulfilled in the
perfection of what He has accomplished.
He is delighted in our fellowship, and in what He sees "for
sweet is thy voice and thy countenance lovely." We learn
to guard and protect that which we have attained to in Him.
"Take us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines:
for our vines have tender grapes" SS 2:15. May no sin
spoil that holy development!
We belong to each other, "My beloved is mine, and I
am His..." SS 2:16.
The fall harvest is gathered and stored. The experience
of knowing Him allows us to return to the winter season full
of security and dependence on His help. Faith will be nurtured
again. The cycle continues. . .
This pleases Him.
Many people today do not flow with this wonderful invitation
to "come away. "Some prefer the seclusion of winter
and total isolation from activities. Although proper in its
timing, we are not to continue forever in this state.
It is noteworthy that two Scriptural references that speak
of unbelief and doubt take place in the winter setting. Jeremiah
36:22,23. Jeremiah's prophecy about the King of Babylon coming
to destroy the land was rejected by King Jehoiakim. He cut
up the scroll and cast it in the fire! In John 10:22-25, "Jesus
answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works
that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me."
The winter season separates the sheep from the goats. It
is a time of stillness before Him. As we are depleted in ourselves,
we learn to draw from His well. Winter means "to make
wet." " I will give unto him that is athirst of
the fountain of water of life freely" Rev. 21:6.
Spring is full of praise and rejoicing. It is beautiful.
Some thrive on he pace and excitement of this season and refuse
to "come away" and enter the summers heat. The pressure
and intensity of this phase is very demanding, but produces
growth and maturity. Summer grants to us spiritual discernment
and the ability to see clearly and function accordingly, (Luke
21:29-31). The chaff from within is driven away, (Daniel 2:35).
The labor of summer prevents poverty, (Proverbs 6:8-11).
The fall is the culmination of abundance and blessing. How
we need this too. Prosperity enables us to give again. Yet
there are those who do not want to experience anything but
harvest and good times. Although the harvest is great (Luke
10:2), many will not participate in it (Matthew 9:37).
God in His wisdom has established the seasons. One may be
longer than the others. As missionaries in the jungle of Peru,
which was close to the Equator, we were in a place where it
was almost always summer. Here in Alaska, we have about 8
months of winter. He determines the time length of each season.
Follow Him into each one, with a willing heart. Let Him
bring about the balance that we might truly KNOW HIM.