"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
Atime to kill, and a time to heal;
A time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
Atime to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
A time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to tear, and a time to sew;
A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate;
A time for war, and a time for peace.
...He has made everything beautiful in its time." - Ecclesiastes 3:1-8,11a
"Jessica, it's not your season."
Man. How many times have I tried to live in the wrong season? How many times have I wished that Emerson could be just a little more independent? How many times I have whined inwardly when Macie asked me to help her turn the water on in the bathroom because she can't reach it? How many nights have I cried out to God, "Please! Just let Levi sleep! I need sleep too!"? Too many times.
But the truth is that right now, that's not my life. Soon enough Emerson will be driving herself to school and I'll help my baby girl pack up her stuff and move off to college. Soon enough Macie won't need me to do much of anything for her and she'll let me know that. Soon enough Levi will be coming in at his curfew and not give a second thought to needing me in the middle of the night. I'll have a beautifully decorated house with all the glass pretties I can find. And that's how it should be. In that season.
If I've learned anything in my short 32 years of life, it's that when we chase the future, or a different place, or a different person, we miss out what God has for us today. We miss the beauty of THIS season.
I would miss that quick backward glance Emmy gives me before she walks into school, making sure I haven't pulled away yet and wanting an extra wave. I would miss Macie's sweet voice singing hand washing songs at the sink and making faces in the mirror. I would miss Levi's sweet smiles and more opportunity to pray over him in the dark night. I would miss ministering to my children in the place that God has called me to right now. I would miss the fulfillment of God's presence in this day. I would miss God shaping me and molding me in the way that only this time in my life can.
Imagine if Michelangelo had decided that he was bored with one section of the Sistine Chapel ceiling, left it undone, and moved onto the next part. It certainly would not be the masterpiece we consider it to be today. I'm sure it was tedious. I'm sure it was exhausting. He made mistakes. He changed his original plan. I'm sure he even thought about quitting, but he didn't. He persisted.
If your season is that of change, be brave. Trust God and step into it.
If your season is waiting, take a breath and ask God to fill your waiting space with his presence.
If your season is spit up, diapers, toys, and no sleep, ask God to open your heart and fill it will each day. Ask him to write these times in your memory, because you won't get a second chance at them.
If your season is emptiness, ask God to reveal a new purpose. Search out a way to fill someone else's life.
If your season is pain, embrace it. Feel it. Let God shape you through it so that you enter your next season ready.
Embrace this season. Live in it. Make it all that you can. Because one day you'll look back and realize that all those times of persistence created a beautiful masterpiece. There might be side steps, and uncertainty, mess ups, plan B's, and second chances, but all of those things and more weave together in God's plan- His seasons- for your life.