For everything there is a season …

I love seasons. And I’m thankful indeed to live in a place where we really have them.

I like summer, though it is not my favorite. The best thing about summer, I think, is that since kids and teachers have at least a few weeks off, life even for the rest of us tends to take on a little less harried and hurried hue. The shrill voices of the bean counters pushing “year round school” a decade or two ago have fallen blissfully silent. Not all of the most important education kids receive happens in school. Summer helps keep things in perspective.

Speaking of school, the school calendar and the seasons are a tad in conflict. The fall semester begins in summer and the spring term begins in the dead of winter. But it’s funny that in my part of the world, nature seems to pay undue attention to the school calendar. School starts and nature often flips the autumn switch a month early. Mornings become cooler, cool fronts begin showing up, morning fog becomes pretty common, and, I’m thankful to say, grass slows its growth and yard slaves begin to live in hope of fall’s freedom.

I love the cooler respite autumn provides. One of the best things about summer is the opportunity to work with the Lord in growing some of his beautiful plants and flowers. In summer’s harshest heat, scorching and parching are dangers. But autumn comes along and the plants you’ve been sweating over all summer get a chance to breathe a sigh of relief, strut their stuff, and do more than just cling to life. Come to think of it, now that the old grass is slowing down, we’re heading into a great time to get some new grass started in some bare patches. Sometimes I think fall is my favorite season.

But then comes winter, and that means fireplaces and hot tea and sweaters and snow and Christmas. In rare moments when I’m sitting by the fire with a good book and snow is falling outside, I tend to think winter is my favorite season.

Spring is all about new life. How can you not like spring? But spring here means wind, and any season with lots of wind with dirt in it has a good bit to overcome in my book. But some green starting to poke through dead stuff is still exciting.

Yeah, I like seasons. The wise man was right: “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” God spins this world, whirls it around the sun, and amazing things happen. The same God gives us life and leads us through it, and each stage and season of our lives has its own challenges but also its own enthralling beauty. Yes, life comes with some occasional dust storms. You hang on and pray for strength to ride out the ugliness. But God’s gift of life also comes with breath-taking beauty. The summer of life brings kids and the autumn of life brings grandkids.

I love the seasons.

Curtis Shelburne is pastor of 16th & Ave. D. Church of Christ in Muleshoe. Contact him at ckshel@aol.com