“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, ESV)
There was a time in my life where, when things didn’t go my way, I defaulted to self-pity, and victim mentality. If I’m not careful, I still do sometimes. We are all wired differently and respond to the same input in different ways. It is easy to get bogged down by negative stimuli, yet some people are at their best when their circumstances are at their worst. And others find it difficult to accept good things, always afraid that the hammer will drop, and never able to enjoy seasons of good things.
Sometimes I wonder how and why people can have such different temperaments despite having grown up in similar circumstances. I am reminded of a story. I’m not certain of the origin (if you know, put it in the comments!). A man had a donkey that was stubborn and refused to cooperate. After fighting with the donkey for years he’d had enough. So he dug a deep pit and put the donkey in the bottom and commenced filling in the hole. The donkey, however, still didn’t cooperate. With each shovelful of dirt thrown on his back the donkey shook it off and stomped it down. The man just kept shoveling dirt, oblivious to the donkey’s actions below. When the man was nearly done the donkey jumped out of the hole!
Some find the silver lining behind every cloud; others see rain. While we can’t pretend to understand why there is this disparity, we can all seek to find reasons for thankfulness. We can also try to remember that life is about seasons.
We all experience Winter—cold and dark. But Winter always gives way to Spring, with new life making itself known everywhere. Summer brings warmth and abundance. Fall spells harvest and Thanksgiving, laying up stores for winter, and sharing with friends.
In life there is no way to know how long any season of life will last. Some may seem to last a lifetime. But Jesus taught us that those who mourn will be comforted (Matthew 5:4).
We all know people who only see the good in things. Likewise we all likely know people who struggle to see a light at the end of the tunnel. In these trying times, with uncertainty and isolation, remember that seasons change. And perhaps seek to be the Spring to another’s dark Winter.
As always, these are the musings of a mindful disciple. Blessings on your week! If you are blessed by Skipping Stones please consider sharing a link with your friends and family.
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