The transition of seasons is always my favorite time of year. Here in the Bay Area we usually have an Indian Summer, however toward the end of August it always feels like we’re having a false-start Fall. The evenings get cooler and the mornings are a little frosty, and some of the leaves start to fall.
I remember sitting at my piano teachers house at this time of the year every Tuesday afternoon and looking out at her deck as the colored leaves fell on her bench. She had a terraced backyard and the view of the creek and leaves always made me smile. However…it also made it hard to focus on piano lessons because of the sunlight outside – it was always so pretty as it filtered through the trees. It was distracting.
Similar to life transitions.
Seasons of transition can be distracting. Our lives are difficult enough in the stable moments and our focus can be split between the various tasks at hand. But in transition? Not only are we walking through all of those feelings, as well as the associated tasks, but we are also having to deal with the dailies too.
In transition the period of waiting and sense of “timing” seems never-ending. It feels as if the pressure we are under is never going to end and, sometimes we wonder if the faint light we see at the end of the tunnel is the end or just a train coming to flatten us just a little bit more.
My mind is brought to Ecclesiastes 3:1-15. Even though this scripture is used so often, it was brought to light in a little of a different way this year:
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; a time 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; a time 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; time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; time for war, and a time for peace.What gain has the worker from his toil? I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man.I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before him. That which is, already has been; that which is to be, already has been; and God seeks what has been driven away.”
My words that stood out most for this present season are from verse 11: “He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.”As I read this I realized that regardless of what season of transition I am in – or you are in – God is working behind the scenes. In my heart. In your heart he has placed eternity – meaning a limitless life – that we cannot imagine. That the timing we see here, the moments of waiting and transition are not without hope, because beauty will unfold in God’s timing.
What hope do we find in this?
We are reminded that our stories are not without significance. Our pain, whether past, present or future, is not without purpose. Our purpose is to journey with joy knowing that His plans, His timing, will prevail. That He has made everything beautiful in its time.
“You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they can find peace in you.”