Seasoned by Seasons

I woke up with one of my friends on my heart.  She had appeared in my dream last night.  After texting her to see how she was doing, I reminded her how sometimes we run into some hard seasons but faith is one of the main reasons why we can’t give up!  This definitely wasn’t a coincidence because she expressed how grateful she was for the thought and encouraging words! 

A few hours later during church service, the praise and worship team’s last song was “Don’t Do It Without Me” by Bishop Paul S. Morton.  Majority of the song says “whatever you’re doing in this season, don’t do it without me”.  The song continues to ask God not to leave them out of any blessings or healings that He might perform in this season.  Later that evening, one of my close friends sent a message in a group text praising a writing piece of mine she had read and encouraging us to trust God in the various seasons of our lives. 

One day, three different encounters, all hitting on the same main point.  SEASONS.  After the text from my last friend, I sat there pondering on all three occurrences.  This was certainly not a coincidence. For the past few months I had been struggling, questioning my current season.  I had been praying about what to do, how to think, and most of all asking God for comfort and encouragement if He didn’t give me anything else!  After meditating and reflecting, the Holy Spirit reminded me of two points: 

1. All seasons aren’t going to be favorable, pretty or easy.
2. No matter what season we are in we have to embrace it!
Bishop Morton’s song focuses on not leaving him out on any healings or any other blessings from God.  Yes, I don’t want Him to leave me out of a blessing, but I also don’t want God to leave me out of a LESSON!  Most times when we refer to blessings, the first things that come to mind are the beautiful experiences.  We shouldn’t want God to leave us out of ANY season He’s planned for us, favorable or not!  

Showing Gratitude

There's a saying that goes: “when we give thanks for today's blessing, we are bound to receive more tomorrow”

If a young child walks up to us and asks for help on an assignment, a project or simply for some money to support a certain cause, we can choose to help or not. If we however decide to help the child, they will be excited and thankful. Now imagine, you meet that same child a week later and they walk up to you and say "thank you for your support the other day, I'm very grateful". We would definitely be impressed by the child's act of gratitude. We would even be willing to help the child in the future even before they ask.

This is the same way God feels when we give thanks for our lives and all He has blessed us with. So much may be going on around such as disappointments, delays or we may even find ourselves in difficult situations. This does not erode the fact that some great things are also happening around us, which we never really pay attention to. When we woke up this morning for instance, we were able to move about and go about our daily lives without needing any  support.  God's grace and love is always evident in our lives even if we don't realise it.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God (Phillipians 4:6).

Having a heart of gratitude opens more doors for us and helps us to achieve more. When we say "Thank You God for all you have done", we are simply motivating Him to do more for us on a greater scale than the former. Being able to show gratitude during tough times can ultimately make God turn bad situations around for our good.

Postive Speaking

A few weeks ago, I was watching a three-year old girl recite some Bible verses. After reciting a few, she got stuck and couldn't continue. At that point, her aunt asked her: "What do you say to your mind?". She replied: "…my mind is enlightened with wisdom, knowledge, understanding and retentive memory through the blood of Jesus Christ". Afterwards, her aunt told her to continue reciting the verses from where she stopped and she recited it all this time. An alternative option for the girl was to say: "I can't remember" or "this is too much for me to handle" but rather, she used her words positively.

Our words have a way of making things turn around for our good, if we can learn to use them right. Guidance and revelation can be experienced when we practice the art of confessing positive words into our lives, our studies, career, business or family. Most successful people have maintained the practice of speaking positive words into their lives. We rarely hear them speak negatively about their businesses, work or family. We need to understand that our words have a way of bringing God's grace and favour into our lives.

"For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them." (Mark 11:23-24)

Our words, depending on how we use them have the capacity of working wonders for us; they can shape, define and brighten up our lives, they can even deliver us from difficult situations. The same way Jesus used his words to calm the storm, raise Lazarus from death and dry up the fig tree, we can also use our words to turn situations around for us.

This Morning

This morning at work, I went to the kitchenette to grab a little something for breakfast. My co-worker was pouring his cup of coffee and seemed a little less cheerful than usual. As I greeted him, he told me in a low disheartening manner that he had broken his coffee mug. He went on explaining how it fell out of his hand, hit a lower shelf, cracked and cracked in various places. He said he tried putting it back together but it just wasn’t the same. You see, he had been using this mug EVERY workday for many years now. This special mug had his daughter’s footprints, her name, birth date and “I love you” on it. He said he had just gotten off the phone with his daughter telling her what happened. When I asked how she took the news, he explained that from her response she seemed a little disappointed but definitely not as much as he was.
He stood there sipping coffee out of a new red mug. I tried encouraging him, telling him it would be ok and that I was sure it would look great on display in a China cabinet. He kind-of just shook his head no, still in disbelief.  A few seconds later he left and came back with the broken mug wrapped in tape and assembled with crazy glue. After trying to console him one last time, I went back to my desk.
I sat there and thought of how my co-worker’s disappointment related to our relationship with our heavenly Father.  Does God get this sad when we fall and become broken? I’m sure he gets a little discouraged with us from time to time but guess what… He is the potter (Jeremiah 18:1-6)! As the song written by Tramaine Hawkins explains, God wants to put our pieces back together again when we become broken!  Not only can He transform us, but He’s able to do it without hesitation, constructing us in an even better image than what we were before our broken periods! He has something so much stronger and attractive than crazy glue and tape!  
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