You know those times you have a certain song stuck in your brain for days and then weeks on weeks? That’s this song for me right now. “Seasons” by Hillsong. Wow.
The lyrics are powerful. And they resonate so powerfully within me because that’s exactly where I am right now! When I hear this song I get really emotional. It’s like I can sense Jesus speaking to me and I can feel His promises…His promises are coming and He is on the move!
This song paints a beautiful picture. To me it tells a story, and I have to tell you that story.
“Like the frost on a rose, winter comes for us all.”
Can you picture it? Frost on a rose? The delight of summer and glory of fall…carried into winter…a place many of us often don’t want to go. A place so many of us dread.
We know the cold. We’ve tasted that frost. That killing frost.
In the beginning it’s stunningly beautiful, covering everything in a delicate sprinkling of white, with all of the colors of fall shining brightly against the snow.
But we know what’s coming, so we dread it. As every leaf falls and everything beautiful seems to die around us, the darkness grows stronger and seems to settle in for the long haul, soon taking up more time than the light. And suddenly hope and joy seem to fade.
“Oh how nature acquaints us with the nature of patience. Like a seed in the snow, I’ve been buried to grow. For Your promise is loyal, from seed to sequoia.”
Wow. Have you been there? Can you see it? Nature is amazing, when we get to see how intricately God has created everything. Creation takes some time. It requires patience.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a seed? If you imagine it, it doesn’t seem very nice.
Imagine with me. You’re deep in the dirt. It’s isolating. Dark. Cold. Confusing. Muffled. Frustrating. You can’t see anything down there. You can’t hear anything. Every once in a while you get doused with something wet, which surprises you but seems to come at exactly the moment you’re beginning to get very thirsty. It sustains you, so you know you need it and you know you’re being taken care of. But still! Why does it have to wait until the last minute? And why does it have to be so…well…wet?
“Though the winter is long, even richer the harvest it brings. Though my waiting prolongs, even greater your promise for me like a seed, I believe that my season will come.”
The seed can’t see. It doesn’t feel like it’s growing. It doesn’t know what its purpose is while it waits in the dark. It’s growing roots, but it doesn’t feel like it.
I’ve felt like this for several years now. Waiting. Not feeling like I’m getting anywhere. Just waiting for something…but not knowing what that something is. Dreaming. Hoping. Praying for breakthrough. Trying desperately to trust God’s timing and provision on so many different levels with so many different things in my life.
It’s a real and tough place. Have you been there? Are you there now?
I’m learning this can also be a really good place, though.
In the midst of the waiting and not knowing what God is doing in this season…I’ve been growing in bold trust that what He has promised me will come to pass. That He truly knows best.
“Lord I think of Your love, like the low winter sun. As I gaze I am blinded in the light of Your brightness. Like a fire to the snow, I’m renewed in Your warmth. Melt the ice of this wild soul till the barren is beautiful.”
Then He comes! He gives you a glimpse of what He’s doing. Just a little glimpse: a small answered prayer, an overflow of peace to your day, a moment of the sweetest joy, just to say “Hey there, dear one, I see you, I know you, and I can’t wait to show you all I have in store. Wait a little while longer. Do you trust Me? It’s going to be amazing. Just wait a little while longer.”
You feel warm again. He’s melted some of the snow around you with His love. He reassures you haven’t been forgotten – because truthfully, you’ve never been forgotten – but the feeling just felt so real.
“I can see the promise. I can see the future. You’re the God of seasons. I’m just in the winter. If all I know of harvest is that it’s worth my patience, then if You’re not done working, God I’m not done waiting!”
If I’m waiting, it must mean something. There’s a purpose for everything, God made our bodies so intricately, designed each of us so wonderfully and specifically, that it makes sense your story wouldn’t be the same as mine. It makes sense we each have different waiting and growth seasons in our lives. He knows our stories. He wrote them.
There’s something about a story. We all want a good one. We all want to go on adventures. But sometimes adventures don’t feel that great. There’s hardship and adversity. We all want that end-of-the-book mountaintop experience. And it’s COMING! But we need to grow, and we grow stronger as we walk through the elements and grow tough skin and faith that will weather every type of storm.
The seed, during its waiting, begins to sense a change. It doesn’t know what’s exactly changing yet. But it senses it. The ground is still frozen. The seed is still locked in place. But it feels something has begun to happen. It knows something is coming. Faith rises.
“You can see my promise even in the winter, cause You’re the God of greatness, even in a manger.”
Picture yourself as that seed again. If you emerged from the soil too soon, you wouldn’t be strong enough. You wouldn’t be nourished enough. You wouldn’t grow as tall as you were made to.
Then it happens! You feel yourself pushing through! The promise begins to be fulfilled before your very eyes, often suddenly and without warning after all of that waiting. You see glimmers of light through the dark, damp dirt around you…and finally, just barely, you emerge from the soil, into the sunlight! Oh, what glorious sunlight and warmth! The air is still cold, but you don’t care because you have a fresh perspective and you feel like you’ve made it!
You cheer loudly! Finally!
Until your eyes take in your surroundings and you gaze up at the trees around you. Wow, they are so tall. Your stomach sinks a little and you find yourself realizing you have a lot farther to go than you thought. When it will be your turn to be so strong and so tall? You feel so small, so breakable, so vulnerable.
The promise is coming and growing within you, but when you compare yourself with others around you, it feels hopeless again. They have their promise. Why can’t you have yours yet? Why does everything have to take so long? Why can’t it just happen now?
You’ve just emerged from the soil. You now have a fresh, renewed perspective. It’s a joyful moment. You see you grew and you didn’t even know it! Yet you see you still have more growing to do.
Take heart, dear one. God knows us. He knows how He made us. He knows what we need to grow strong and tall. He’s going to get us there.
“If all I know of harvest is that it’s worth my patience, then if You’re not done working, God, I’m not done waiting!”
This. Wow. God, if you’re not done working, then I’m not done waiting.
Even though it’s hard to sing, this is what I want with every fiber of my being. I don’t want to go anywhere without Jesus. I don’t want to get ahead of what He’s doing inside of me, the things I don’t know yet or don’t know how to put into words yet.
“For all I know of seasons is that You take Your time. You could have saved us in a second, instead You sent a child. And when I finally see my tree, still I believe there’s a season to come.“
Even Jesus waited. He waited 30 years to begin the calling He knew was on His life. The calling He came to earth for. To save us. He, though Creator of the world, chose to come as a baby. He took the form of one He created and came to grow up as a human and experience what it is like to grow up as we do.
“Like a seed You were sown for the sake of us all, from Bethlehem’s soil grew Calvary’s sequoia.”
Jesus grew up in Bethlehem. There He learned to grow. He learned patience. He weathered the storms of the human life, growing stronger in stature and in faith and trust in His Heavenly Father. He learned how to persevere. He learned what His Father’s voice sounds like. He learned how to listen to His voice and do what He says no matter what. So He would be ready for Calvary – for the cross – for the moment He saved all of His Creation.
He showed us how to grow roots and patiently allow to the Lord to work in the perfect timing as only He chooses and knows.
If He can do it, I know I can, too. If He had to wait, that means I DEFINITELY need to wait. I know myself and I know my tendencies. Jesus is God. He didn’t need to wait, but still He chose to come as a baby and grow up and experience life with us – patiently growing and waiting until it was His time to shine.
“And when I finally see my tree, still I believe there’s a season to come.”
He keeps telling me, “It’s all going to make sense!” I trust that it will. What joy that will be!
There’s so much more – truly the best is yet to come! More seasons, yes. More waiting, probably.
Continue walking forward. Step by step. Moment by moment. Seed to sequoia, His faithfulness will prove itself evident. His promises are sure because He has promised. So He will fulfill them. Every single one. In the right, perfect timing.
Until one day we look down and see we’ve not only grown strong roots, but have grown to be the strongest and sturdiest of trees, with lively, dancing branches lifted high to the heavens, praising our Maker for how far He’s taken us, and knowing He will continue to take us higher, because that’s just how good He is.
Lyrics are ©Hillsong Music Publishing. Photos are from the internet and are not my own.