Friday, March 23, 2012

TO EVERYTHING THERE IS A SEASON

This wonderful post was written by my friend, Lara Love, over at Walk by Faith Ministry.  I hope it blesses and encourages you as much as it did me.

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Resurrection of the Trees

I couldn't believe my eyes. Nor could I believe what the Lord had placed in my heart. Probably few people have been as excited, and humbled, by little buds of leaves on a tree. But I was. After all, I had been quite certain that the once glorious trees that form a long line across my yard were plain and simply - dead.

"God, please do something with these trees," I had prayed dejectedly, and not so sincerely, just days before. What could I possibly do with a bunch of dead trees? With the South Carolina climate bringing forth months of brutal heat and a large number of dogs that love the outdoors, I couldn't imagine what my life - and yard - would be like in the upcoming months since my trees had so obviously failed to revive this year.

Where would the dogs lie down and enjoy the shade of all these previously beautiful trees? How would I enjoy my yard quite as much when I looked out at a row of dead trees? How could the trees possibly be bare of leaves at this time of year? We have had plenty of warm weather and sunshine thus far in weeks past. Quite obviously, the trees had died. What could have killed them? I wondered as I perused their "legs" (trunks) and "arms" (branches) for signs of disease - not that I know much at all about trees. I can hardly remember saying a prayer, but somewhere amid my sad spirit I surely tossed one up to heaven.

But alas, the Lord knew my trees truly didn't need my prayer at all. The Lord, after all, knows the seasons of the year. He knows all of our needs, even the trees. He knows the life span of everything. He knows the cycles of everything and everyone. He knows the time of birth, and He knows the time of re-birth. He knows all about trees, and He quite obviously knows all about me.

Surely the Lord was smiling down from heaven as He watched His daughter murmur about the state of her trees. The funny thing is, they are not my trees at all. They are His. The yard is not mine. It is His. The dogs belong to Him, and so do I. He knew what was to come, and I can only imagine He looked forward to what would happen when I discovered the resurrection of the trees.

Yes, just today I saw it all. All the buds. The buds of leaves. The buds of leaves of trees I had assumed dead. How I smile to see what the Lord has done. But truthfully, the Lord has not resurrected the trees. The trees have produced their buds of leaves right on time. His time. And not only could I not believe my eyes at the sight of the buds on the trees. But I marvel at what the Lord has placed in my heart. Yet another lesson in faith.

How often in our lives do we presume something is dead? How often do we walk away from a person, place, or thing because we have no hope? How often do we give up praying for someone we love because we believe it is too late? How often do we put the brakes on a vision the Lord has given us because we have not yet seen it come to pass? How often have we imagined a dream has died and failed to give it a chance to come into being? How often have we turned away from a relationship because we would not wait for the Lord's appointed season for it to blossom?

I could have chopped down the trees in my yard because I had declared them dead. At the very least, I had given up on them. I was already morose over the loss of them. But such a short time afterward, the Lord showed me they were not dead at all. They are as alive as they have ever been. This is the time of their season.

Sometimes we give up on people, places, and things the Lord has ordained just a short while before God's appointed time for them. Other times, we turn away because we believe we have waited far too long. Sometimes God gives us a dream or vision for something so far in the future that we give up on it because we cannot imagine waiting that long for the vision to be born.

Do you have something or someone the Lord has put put on your heart that you have quite simply determined dead? Have you given up on a dream He gave you? Or praying for a person in dire need of prayer and love? Or a vision He keeps reminded you is for an appointed time in the future - not now. Please don't give up. Please trust the Lord that He not only knows the seasons of the trees. He knows your seasons also. And He knows your future, and mine. He knows the order, and cycle, and seasons, of all that He has created.

Perhaps the dream He has given you is not dead at all. Perhaps it is simply not yet time. Only the Lord knows.

I look out the window and smile as I see the trees with which the Lord has blessed me and the dogs. Sometime soon, I know, the Walk by Faith Ministry dogs will be lying in their shade. And I will watch them, and remember, that the Lord made these trees. And He has given them another season. And He has given me another reminder that His ways and thoughts are His own - and always the very best. In His time.

Ecc 3:1 "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

Ecc 3:2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
Ecc 3:3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
Ecc 3:4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
Ecc 3:5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
Ecc 3:6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
Ecc 3:7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
Ecc 3:8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace."

Reprinted with permission from Walk by Faith Ministry, www.walkbyfaithministry.com

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