Monday, April 6, 2015

A New Season of Life

In the private corners of my life, I've been exchanging what is familiar for what is arriving new. 

Indeed, this last week was a bit unyielding with reminders that in small and large ways, all of life is about change, not only in the world around me, but the soul within me. 
Early mornings were sprinkled with pastel colored skies that stretched out like a canopy. Even though the morning temperatures remind me that the long season of winter is leaving slowly, robins are building their nest and dance across the lawn. The ground is softening, but still shows more brown than green. Crab-apple trees are exploding with blooms and overhead, the muted cries of grey-bodied Sandhill cranes fly high. They are moving on to the next place in their own migration journey. 

All around, signs of new growth are pushing up and out and onward.

Though I welcome this new season, it's arriving whether I embrace it or not.  

The fragile pages of time and life continue with or without consent and change is always what God uses, to make us more of who we are really becoming.

I've never been one to think that the life I have right now, is the one I’ll always have. There are just days that I am more aware of changes.

It started with time spent with the beautiful, bronze skinned girl I meet with most every week. She doesn't want to talk about the fact that next month she will be moving to a new school and everything will change for us. I’m wondering if our hours together have had any real impact on her heart. Even if it didn't change her, she has changed me. My eyes are now open to see things in the world that I drove by, before I knew her.

There is a wedding coming soon and long lists that need tended to. I'm trying to do just a little bit every day. When it comes to weddings, I’m not as concerned about the one day, as I am all the days of their life spent together. So as much as anything I find myself whispering prayers over the changes they are stepping toward. 

One day a week, I load up all the grand-kids that are available. 

I drive slow.  

There is zero chance that this season will last long enough for me.  JQ and I both try to inhale all the rolling chaos, every slobbery kiss, and every skinned toe. We can’t get enough of life through their eyes. 

A few days ago was the anniversary of my mom’s sudden passing. The loss of her, has settled over my life like an uncomfortable pair of jeans. At every bend and turn I am aware of how unpleasant it is to live without her. There are few days that I’m not reminded of how fragile life is and how mostly there is just an instant between time and all of eternity. She has missed four Easter Sunday meals, the birth of eight of her great-grandchildren, and this weekend, there was an empty chair where she should have been sitting for her youngest granddaughters Bridal Shower. 

It has changed the emotional landscape of my life. It has also made me more aware of others. Their pain, their fears and even the whole resistance to change that most of us battle. 

Still, there is no stopping how the pages of life turn, before we're ready.    

The endings, beginnings, and all of life having its way — hard and beautiful and fading. Always, there is loss inter-weaved with growth. 

There is heartbreak and mystery beyond any human understanding. Most days if we are honest, we are challenged to surrender, to accept, and to embrace, change.

Old routines, along with the familiar and loved things in my life have slipped away as change pushes in.

There is no time to waste in loving those who will allow us to be part of their life and to pray over the rest. There is no time to look back and try to rework in our mind what cannot be changed. There is only time to embrace today, this right now time in our lives, and to do the next thing that really matters.

Always, there’s a bigger picture unfolding, a story being written that’s larger than the one we can see. 

On Thursday, we had cupcakes and said our proper goodbyes at the job I've held for eight years.

These people are all the best of the best. I have no reason to leave except that the Lord has been moving me. Trust me, I've been resistant to His voice, since it really makes no sense. 

Change is mostly like that. –Moving on, when we aren't sure that we're ready. 

It has only added to this reflective mind-set of mine. 

In the time I've worked for this company, there have been, many transitions that have radically changed who I am and how I do life. 

I've seen my children grow up and turn into better adults than I could have prayed. All the wedding dresses, truck loads to new homes, and hospital visits to meet the grandchildren. Countless small changes that added up to bedrooms being empty and hearts being remade with joy and tears in the next season. 

There was the death of my younger brother, my own life changing cancer diagnoses and seeing my mom pass though the invisible veil that separates this world and eternity.  

So many seasons of change that brought unprecedented changes in the condition of my soul.

I am convinced that these years have served to draw me closer to Jesus. 

And now I’m being lead to a new place.

Honestly I’m trying to throw my arms around the unknown of where God is taking me in this new season of life.

Change is always inviting me to trust in God with the details and my lack of understanding. 

In response to living in the unknown, Elisabeth Elliot often said, "Just do the next thing."  

As long as we are living and growing there will be seasons of change ahead. I just want to be faithful to do the things God has set before me to do.

It feels like I'm standing on the cusp of something, perhaps its just spring, but maybe its the turning towards a new season, and I want to mark it.  

What I know? Where God is leading, God will illuminate the path. And where I go, God is already there.

That is what I am wrestling with this week. 

Plus there are some kites to fly and some orange infused water to drink.

What season do you find yourself in?

Did your life happen just the way you thought it would?

*Photo of my grandson on his bike was taken by his mom with my camera. Since she risked being hurt in the name of getting a good shot, I thought I would include it in the collage above. Thank you Amy. :)

Linking up at Jennifer's.


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© Rhonda Quaney