Accepting the Season You’re In
A few friends have asked me recently, “Have you stopped writing?” I’ve been blogging for a decade and have written well over 1000 articles on my own website and contributing to others, but I’ve barely written anything over the last year.
Except in my private Growth Book.
King Solomon, with his special gift of wisdom, tells us there is a time for everything. “There is a time to be silent and a time to speak.” (Ecclesiastes 3:7b NIV) I have been speaking on paper for a decade, but this last year has been my time to be silent. It’s not because God has been far but because suffering has been close. I’ve picked up my pen often, but the ink has been used to call out to the Lord in the darkness of night. Calling out lament. Calling out for understanding. Calling out for instruction on how to respond to the most trying of circumstances in so many directions.
On Spotify, I created a playlist called “perseverance”–an eclectic collection of songs that coach me to love strong, to forgive, to keep a soft heart toward people, to keep going when I want to throw in the towel, and to choose joy on the dark days. I have listened to these songs privately hundreds of times, begging God to turn my heart in the right direction–just me and my AirPods and Jesus.
It has been a long season of laboring, until my spiritual muscles have turned to Jell-O, to deny my own emotions about different situations and reach for obedience to God instead.
All of my writing this year has been underground, where my roots in God’s word have been growing down, down, down–searching for living water. Ann Voskamp says, in The Broken Way:
. . . you press your back up against the steadying strength of an oak tree on a humid Thursday out in some far-flung place and you look up into those tree limbs and realize half that tree is underground, and you can only see the half rooted in the light.
There is a time to do heart work that happens in the cold darkness of soil.
In being silent for so many weeks, the risk has been that maybe I will fade away as a writer. Maybe readers will stop caring, stop following, stop looking for me in their inbox. The risk is that if I am quiet for a season, no one will see me, and my little platform will crumble for my lack of presence. But Jesus constantly took this risk. He “often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16 NIV) Jesus knew when to teach the crowds and when to get alone with his Father, not worried about the loss of time in the public eye.
There was a time for Jesus to heal people and calm seas and turn water into wine and speak eloquently, to baffle the greatest scholars.
And there was a time to withdraw.
In her book Unseen, Sara Hagerty says:
. . . there was this second storyline, the most important storyline. The first might have been “Sara published a book” . . . but the second storyline has a title that I can’t even share here or it might lose its weight and beauty. And all the images that stretch across my mind as I write about it are mostly to be shared between God and me.
This is a season of God writing my second storyline–the one I can’t even share because it’s just between God and me.
A simple question, to end this post: what is it time for in your life?
A time to be born or a time to die?
A time to plant or a time to uproot?
A time to kill or a time to heal?
A time to tear down or a time to build?
A time to weep or a time to laugh?
A time to mourn or a time to dance?
A time to scatter stones or a time to gather them?
A time to embrace or a time to refrain?
A time to search or a time to give up?
A time to keep or a time to throw away?
A time to tear or a time to mend?
A time to be silent or a time to speak?
A time to love or a time to hate?
A time for war or a time for peace?
There is a season for everything.
(Adapted from Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)
I pray the Lord will help you identify, receive willingly, and thrive in the season in which he has placed you.
Yes, Lord!! ♥️ And I pray in agreement & complete trust in His sweet care. He loves His daughters indeed!
Dear Christy, I just want you to know that, though I sometimes forget to “expect” your blog posts ~ because I get lost & overwhelmed in my own storyline ~ I do love it when I find one from you in my inbox. You are a blessing & your words usually resonate with my heart & soul. I appreciate today’s blog post; I needed to hear I’m okay in this time of quiet floating in an unseen direction, trusting only in the fact that I know my Heavenly Father will not forget me, and that He will lead me in the way I should go, whenever His time is right.
You are so okay in a time of quiet and unseen. I pray he will lead us in paths of righteousness!
Oh Christy, Thank you for your willingness to share your story 3 years ago our family experienced several back to back grief-filled life changing events… some somewhat expected and some very much unexpected… the physical death of my mom, the emotional relational “ death” or separation of our oldest son and his family from our entire family… I admit this sent me into a tailspin although I did my best to hide it from the rest of the family and the world in general. It was during the next year in particular that God met with me in those dark times by providing time to be alone with him, and resources from some unexpected authors and ministries. I especially relate to the phrase you used “This is a season of God writing my second storyline–the one I can’t even share because it’s just between God and me”. This thought is very freeing to me.
I’m so sorry for the grief you’ve suffered. It does take us to an intimate place with God, though, when we reach out for him in the dark.
Is your ‘perseverance’ playlist something you can share?
I think you can search for my name on Spotify and see my playlists. Be prepared for a few old songs. I am 52. hahaha
You are yet so young, my Friend!
I had the same question. I will be searching for your playlist.;)
Well, when you see Petra on there you might change you’re mind! hahaha
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