One of Josh’s favorite quotes is by C.S. Lewis and it says, “Isn't it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when we look back everything is different.”
Our family is in a season of different. We live in a different house, in a different city, on a different continent. Even though we have been in the US for a year now, we only decided to stay about 3 months ago…and since that decision was made, the different began. It’s not better…it’s not worse…it’s just different. And my oh my, how does that quote by C.S. Lewis ring true!
I could list the differences all day long. Friends, cars, relationships with family, schools, rhythms, obligations, church, ministry, responsibilities…the list goes on and on. But what made me think about all these differences was coming across a few verses in Hebrews this morning. Stick with me, it’s a little long, but so good!
In chapter 12, verse 7-11 it says, “Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8 If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
When I read these verses, I see a command in verse 7 to “endure hardship”, then I see an explanation in 8, 9, and 10 as to how and why, which is so kind of God to give us. “It’s for your own good, because I love you. It’s best!” Then, we get to verse 11…and this is where my heart sighed. “It’s going to be hard, but it produces good things…the season will come of different”.
And that is where I am at. The past several years have been very hard for me on a lot of levels. I walked through very hard storms in my marriage, coming to know and understand my real self, and even questioning my faith in my Heavenly Father. It was all a very eye-opening process where I felt tossed and turned by every emotion known to man. Yet, it was necessary. I see it now as discipline. Walking through fires and allowing old habits, scars, and wounds to be burned away is so very painful, but it’s worth it. And now, being able to come to a place of peace and seeing fruits in very dark places of my heart is a miracle that can only be done by the Father Himself.
So let me encourage you today. Maybe you are walking through your own season of refinement. It’s not because God doesn’t love you or because He is punishing you like the enemy may be whispering. It is exactly the opposite. It is because of His great love and care for you that you are walking through your hard. Hang in there! A season of different WILL come!