Tuesday, March 29, 2011
To Every Thing There Is a Season
We have had a rough winter here in the Nashville area with a record number of snow days. In fact, many schools in this area have gone over their designated number of snow days, requiring students to extend their school year. Our first snow occurred in December, which is unheard of, and the wintry precipitation did not stop until into February. We're pretty spoiled in this area with the warm weather. It tends to stay fairly mild here throughout the year. It's not unheard of to have little to no snow at all in the winter. So, for us to get really SICK of snow tells you that it was a lot. Despite the harsh winter and all the previous years of bitter cold, I can say I have never had a therapy client come into my office complaining of despair due to snow, ice, or cold. Yes, sometimes we may feel our mood negatively and temporarily affected on a gray day, but I'm saying I have never seen anyone go into despair over bad weather. Why is that? Why did we Nashvillians not begin to wail and moan in utter hopelessness over the extremely cold and harsh winter we suffered? Because we know it ends! Winter always ends and spring always comes! It is inevitable. We've seen it happen year after year-- the sunshine emerges and the snow melts. Like clockwork spring always comes.
In Ecclesiastes we are told that to EVERYTHING there is a season. This means there is a season for depression, anger, grief, loneliness, and a host of other painful experiences. These things have their season then they end. They always end because we are promised they will end. They are confined to a season. I know that I begin to experience despair and hopelessness in the midst of a painful experience, when I convince myself that "this will never end! I cannot handle it any longer and it will never end!" I don't despair over winter, so why should I despair over other unpleasant experiences? This too shall pass.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which 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 get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, 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 of war, and a time of peace.
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