"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heavens." Ecclesiastes 3:1

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Louisiana Seasons

The official start to Spring has finally arrived, although if you lived around here, you'd know that the azaleas have been in full bloom for quite a while now.  I was born and raised in Louisiana, so "seasons" have always been more of a concept that I had to learn in school, rather than something I could actually expect to correspond with my wardrobe.  Even now, as a homeschooling mother, I've had to adjust my teaching methods so that I could factor in the confusion my kids would experience when we discussed the seasons.  They just didn't understand why we were putting the winter mittens on our "Tell Me About Your Day" chart, when clearly shorts and flip flops were more appropriate for the weather we were having outside.

Plain and simple, living in Louisiana means that you learn to prepare for the unknown.  Our seasons are long and short and back and forth.  We figure out at a young age that you should always ask what the weather is going to be like before dressing for the day, although most of us had to learn that the hard way before turning it into a habit.  Even if you're wearing a sundress today, that doesn't necessarily mean you won't need to sport your favorite sweats tomorrow.  And even if you start your day in sweats, it's probably best for you to wear them with layers, since there's still a good chance it will get up to 80 degrees by lunchtime.

My point is, even though we have dates that mark the beginning and ending of the official seasons, we can't always count on them to last that long or to begin right on time.  Life is like that.  Everything is a season.  All of the good and the bad that we experience has its own season and the truth is, we never know exactly how long that season may last.

Right now, I am in the midst of many seasons in my life.

I am in a season of marriage with my husband, Buddy.  Some days I feel like my marriage is everything I could have ever hoped and dreamed of, and other days I find myself longing for improvement and growth.  I know that Buddy has these moments as well, but since we have kept God as our focus, He has blessed us with 14 years together - 7 years of dating and this summer marks our 7th year of married life! 

Together, Buddy and I are in a season of parenting our three beautiful children and are looking forward to meeting our newest addition who is due this August.  Even though I keep reminding myself that the older kids will have had birthdays by the time the new baby comes, I'm still looking at having four kids under the age of six at home with me every day.  (Did I mention that I homeschool?)  Yes, there are many days that I have to remind myself that this is just a season and that one day I will be able to look back on it and have many good memories to fill my heart.  Until then, we are committed to taking the good days with the bad, and the successes with the failures. 

My friendships have all seen many different seasons, each one's fruitfulness depending on where I am in my life and where my friends are in theirs.  Some of them are in a strong, growing season, and others are unfortunately struggling to survive.

There are days when the seasons of my life build me up and days when they bring me down.  I wish I could say that all of my relationships are in a good place, just like I'd love to say that I never struggle with life's everyday challenges, but that's just not the case.

But everything has a season.  No one knows how long we will get to enjoy the good times or how much more we will have to endure before our current struggles end.  The only thing we can count on is that God is with us through it all.  He never leaves our side.

Ever.

So here I am with a new beginning.  A new season to add to the mix.  I've come up with every excuse as to why I shouldn't do it or why I don't need to do it, but when I prayed about it, I couldn't deny the calling that I felt.  I know that God is asking me to step up and share my life, both the good and the bad, so that maybe someone out there can get the encouragement that they need, when they need it.

It's not always easy to live the life that God has called us to, so for what it's worth, I am going to share my seasons with you.   I pray that wherever you are in the seasons of your life, you will find encouragement in my words and strength from my struggles.  And I pray that you will be open to share with me in the comments or in a private message, if you feel called to do so.  I would love to hear from you!

Please pray for me on my journey.

God bless!
There was an error in this gadget