I don’t know another time when I’ve felt I’ve lived just about every line of this famous piece of poetry written by King Solomon from Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (ESV):
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; 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.
In this crazy C-19 season of life, this is what I have experienced:
the joy of birth–not in my family but in others’ families;
the sadness of death–and loved ones aching because of not being able to visit or celebrate a life together;
lots of plucking up of dead shrubbery in our front yard and trimming of tree branches;
new, vital flowering plants that bring smiles to my face (I’ve noticed it doesn’t take much now to make me smile);
a couple new aches and grandson’s broken arm–with healing coming slowly for both of us;
mourning the losses and celebrating little things, if even from a distance;
stone casting? Oh yeah. I unearthed literal tons of stones in our front yard and reset them in pretty borders;
more special alone time with my husband;
seeking out new recipes for baking and cooking . . . and then doing my best to lose the added pounds, LOL;
projects: chalk-painted a headboard, a cabinet, a bench . . . with more ideas brewing daily . . . oh, I love creating;
new challenges to encourage and love on others rather than engage in useless political discussions that will convince no one;
new opportunities to love on others with random acts of correspondence (inspired by artist/writer Lisa Bogart), as hate comes easily/instinctively/automatically but love is demonstrated and takes work . . . and
daily decisions to be a peace maker, rather than a stirrer- of-the-pot.
And I’m thankful for this scripture that reminds me that life has seasons. I cannot choose the season. [But if I could, it would be fall, y’all!] But I can choose how I handle the season and how I treat others. My words and actions could bring healing in this otherwise virus-enveloped world. That’s what I am choosing: life.
Janet McHenry is a national speaker and the author of 24 books–six of those on prayer, including the bestselling PrayerWalk and her newest, The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus. She loves offering encouragement and hope to groups when she speaks: https://www.janetmchenry.com.
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