This weeks cold snap has had me thinking about winter of a different sort - spiritual winter!
Just as we see in nature, our spiritual lives go through seasons. We are told in Ecclesiastes 3:1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.
Winter is a time of stripping, a season of bleak and barren ground. A time of withdrawal, of things falling away, of aloneness, of heaviness and pain. The trees have lost their vibrant leaves. There is a suffering, a sadness, and a death that must occur. In Spiritual Winter everything seems cold, everyone, even God can seem distant, our reserves seem bare, and our heart aches. Yet as in nature, in Spiritual winter transformation is deep at work.
Psalm 1 speaks of the believer like a tree with deep roots; in winter the tree is disrobed but not dead, motionless, resting, gaining in strength ready for the first shoots of spring to reappear.
Spiritual Winter is where the sanctifying work of Christ moves in a way that the warm, joyful summers never fully could. We are stripped of all that distracts us from God, and we must trust that His hand is at work even when we don’t feel it. We trust that we can continue to draw on the deep roots cultivated in other seasons. We hold fast to His hope and cling to His grace as He becomes our song in the darkest night.
Spiritual Winter is a time and a chance to see God through his word in ways you haven’t before. Find times to engage with God in his word, let songs of His grace, mercy and sovereignty strengthen you and fill your heart. Ask his Spirit to direct your eyes to the ways he is working in the small areas of your life. Winter is a time when the inside can be nourished even when what is outside feels barren.
Like seasons in nature, Spiritual Winter will pass.
Our culture is largely oriented toward action. But dormant dreams are not dead dreams; they are often further opportunities for dialogue with God. He created you to desire fruit, and he desires fruit for you (John 15:8). Winter is a time to take those desires to God in prayer. Winter can also be a season where dreams are cultivated.
Grace & Peace
Jen is an energetic and passionate disciple of Christ who loves to share Jesus with anyone who will listen!