When all kinds of trials and temptations crowd into your lives my brothers, don’t resent them as intruders, but welcome them as friends! Realise that they come to test your faith and to produce in you the quality of endurance.. James 1:2-3 Phillips
God has planned the seasons of our life to be doorways. Though the passing from one to the next seems like a fearful trial, James tells us that when trials come; to welcome them as friends. When I am feeling stressed over changes I cannot stop it helps me to remember the back door of the house where I grew up. It led to my favorite place – Mom’s kitchen! That was where my friends and I waited whenever she passed out fresh chocolate chip cookies and through which our neighbor’s wife knew she could come even if we weren’t home to borrow an egg. The passing of life’s seasons is like God’s kitchen door. Oh without a doubt, an unknown challenge lies behind every one of them. But when we bravely take hold of the door handles we will find that they open at our slightest touch and beyond lies a pathway leading us closer to Him.
Our youth is like the doorway slamming open with the power of a spring thunderstorm. It is terrifying, confusing or wonderful depending on the day. But it seems that the moment we master the trick keeping our balance the fragrance of ripening apples entices us on towards the doorway called summer.
There muddy April pathways give way to the green pastures of June and torrential showers hush to still waters. But then after only a moment to rest by a quiet stream God’s voice calls us to walk a bit further. There the nip of frost at the tips of our fingers tells us that the gateway to harvest lies just ahead. There sit baskets ready to fill with apples, corn to be picked and hay to be put in the barn before winter.
Last comes the fourth season, and though we all tremble at the thought of winter, God has not designed it to be so. Faith tells us, “Don’t be afraid! This is why we have come all this way. Enter with courage!” There we will find God’s great banquet table with the bounty of all the seasons heaped high. There in the center of the feast God’ sets as His centerpiece the book of His eternal promises. For we who have trusted Christ this cold and silent season is a place of rewards and a celebration. Then if we listen we will hear the sound of a heavenly rain gently softening the fields and preparing us for the eternal springtime just up ahead!