God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years… [Genesis 1:14].
The seasons were initiated when He spoke the Earth into motion. Weather changes on a dime here in Denver, as do the seasons and circumstances of our lives. Whether planned and predictable or tragic and unpredictable, things happen every day that initiate these “seasons”. They can be hopeful, new and exciting, overwhelming, refreshing, motivating, hard… the list goes on and on. But I have learned that seasons (although some feel longer than others) are never permanent or indefinite, they are always transitory and temporary.
I want you to pause to do a quick self-assessment. Close your eyes, take a deep breath in, exhale, and… how do you feel? What are you thinking about? Are you exhausted by the circumstances of life? What is this season called? Do you feel hope, and peace despite overwhelming life events? How are you experiencing that?
1 Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to give thanks in all circumstances– 2 Thessalonians 3:16 says the Lord of peace will continually grant you peace in every circumstance– In Philippians 4:11, Paul wrote I have learned to be content in any circumstance.
I want to be more like Paul… but…content in every circumstance? Really? What about the painful, exhausting, scary situation I’m in right now?
Brief sadness, frustration, anger, and extended grieving in some cases are normal, appropriate, human responses to the tragedies of our life. However, for some, the sadness and anger can be a daily struggle and turn into a broken lens through which we attempt to view life, accompanied by hopelessness, bitterness, and despair… especially when the events of our day to day life seem too much to bear.
Is it possible to break out of this way of thinking?
How can we shatter the despair that seems so deep and immovable?
Will I be depressed forever?
I believe that, yes, it’s possible. No, I don’t think you will be depressed forever!
Shattering despair and negative thinking patterns takes a persistent choosing not to allow these thoughts to ruminate and these feelings to dictate your quality of life. This takes quite a lot of work and practice, and yes… it is definitely easier said than done.
This word means “a cutting off.” The root word -cis come from a Latin root which means ‘cut’ or ‘kill.’ A decision, for instance, is a ‘cutting off’ of all possibilities except for one; if you are decisive you have ‘killed’ all other options. For those of us who are typically developing individuals, you need to know that you always have a choice… even when it feels like your thoughts and feelings are automatic. This killing takes hard work, counseling in some cases, and hope for change.
Can I do it on my own? I don’t think so… I would argue that it is impossible to do this alone. Don’t be afraid to ask this important and vulnerable question: “What do I need right now?”
Philippians 4:13 is a verse that has been burned into my conscious for some time and can be summoned immediately when I feel I have lost sight of hope…. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Don’t dismiss these “well known” scriptures as unimportant or cliche. This is a simple truth with complicated and terrifying implications. “All things” pretty much covers it. The fact is that you and I are far more capable than we give ourselves credit for. If we truly believe this Scripture, we are unstoppable with the power of the Holy Spirit to tackle anything we face. Ask: “God, where are you right now in this season?” Find Him and celebrate with Him through the joy and cling to Him in the pain.
Acknowledge that you need Him
Ask Him to help you make choices moment by moment, to shift your thinking and emotions
Acquire help, accountability and support from encouraging and wise friends, family members, and professional counselors
Seasons come and go, and there is much to be learned in all of them. God will purpose the hard things you endure (Romans 8:28) and will rejoice with you in times of abundance, healing, and miracles (Zeph 3:17).
You are worthy of healing.
“For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” [Ecc 3:1]