Surprised by Spring

6:11 AMHeather

The other day, I sat down at the desk in my craft room. It is one of my favorite spots in our house. The desk is up against the window, so when I look out I see the big tree in our front yard and I feel as though I'm sitting in a tree house. What a vantage point! While my lap top booted up, I glanced out and was startled by what I saw. The tree limbs were full of green leaves, budding and blooming. How did this happen? The last time I looked out there the limbs were still barren, reflecting the lingering winter. How is it that seasons had turned without me realizing the transformation?

I sat and pondered this, and immediately my mind went to this beautiful song by Nichole Nordeman called Every Season. Such a poignant song, summarizing the seasons of our life. I have often felt the sting of winter in my life. Most of my college years were like the long dark night of winter, void of light and hope, cold and nearly unbearable. I was at the beginning of a grief journey, stunned by the pain and the sadness. Or, the year long endeavor to start our family, which began with the lost hope of a baby because of a miscarriage. I felt barren and empty, unsure that my wishes and dreams would ever bloom and grow. And, then there was the very deep pit of post partum depression. A dim and bleak place to be sure. I barely functioned for a few months, cloaked in the murky feeling that the gloom and fog might never lift.

Yet in those winters in my life, I was eventually surprised by spring. It happened without me realizing that the changing of the seasons was in progress. Just as I sat at my desk this week noticing that winter was over. In those dark seasons of my life, hope sprang anew when one day, I noticed green leaves where I once saw barren limbs. God was doing a new thing, and faithfully walking me through the storms. It wasn't until I sat in silence that I noticed the winds had stopped howling. It is the promise of Isaiah 43:19:

See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up;
do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and
streams in the wasteland.


In those winters of my life, I did not perceive it until it was actually upon me. Only in the warmth of the springtime sunshine did I notice the chill was gone. Just like in the last verse of Every Season:

And everything that’s new has bravely surfaced
Teaching us to breathe
What was frozen through is newly purposed
Turning all things green
So it is with You
And how You make me new
With every season’s change
And so it will be
As You are re-creating me
Summer, autumn, winter, spring

INTENTIONAL challenge: Whatever season you are currently in, I hope you can hang on to the hope that the seasons will change. If it's dark and barren in your life, I hope you can press on--knowing that the Lord will do a new thing. It might feel as though it will never get better, that the load you carry will always be the burden it is right now. But, rest assured that He will usher in spring, surprising you with the wonder of a new season.

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