Uncelebrated Seasons

Eleza Miller

District Administrator | Heartland District

I missed it!  The one thing I did not want to miss during quarantine was to have more time alone with Jesus.  And, I let it happen!

The weeks since March 16, 2020, or thereabout, when U.S. Governors started restricting residents to their homes in an attempt to thwart the growth of the Coronavirus, have been unlike any other time in my lifetime and I am sure most of yours.  St. Patrick’s Day has somehow  merged into the 4th of July.  My brain seems somewhat paralyzed as to what transpired in between. Winter turned to spring and now it is suddenly summer? 

Easter and Memorial Day occurred, but not with their usual fanfare.  My calendar, which was full of work, school, and church activities transitioned to work and school Zoom meetings, Google Hangouts, parades for birthday parties, and not to mention, online Church. During all this, my four-year old had dance class via Zoom on Thursdays, while my seven-year-old was taking her piano classes through FaceTime. Parents of older children often remind parents of younger children to “not blink” or you will miss this season, or that.

I wanted to blink! I did not enjoy exchanging my real life for a virtual one; where I seemed to have less time and was becoming wearier than before.

In January about twenty Heartland women started a journey through the book, Anonymous, by Alicia Britt Chole.  She summarizes her book in this way, 

“The most influential life in all of history spent 90 percent of his days submerged in the unseen. During three mostly undocumented, undecorated decades, Father God empowered him to live an authoritative, obedient life and die an eternally fruitful death.  How thankful we all can be that Jesus recognized riches in uncelebrated seasons of his life.” (p. 176)

I, unlike Jesus, do not enjoy “uncelebrated seasons of life”. I want to!  My soul craves less and not more, but my personality values more…busyness.  

I fill my life with busyness.  It became so cliché for me to say I am “busy” that I tried to come up with a different phrase to describe what I was doing, “I am strategically pursuing my to do list.”  No, I am still just BUSY!  When I ask myself, “why are you so busy?” The answer is simple, “I let myself be busy.” Alicia Britt Chole describes how “busyness” can keep us from our relationships:

“But perhaps the greatest danger of busyness is how it offers itself as a substitute in our lives for intimacy with others and especially with God.” (p. 175) 

In my desire to be closer to Jesus, I drive myself away with “when I get this one thing done, I’ll have time…”.  Jesus however, when faced with humanity’s demands, withdrew to do “this one thing”; pray to his Father in heaven, which would give him the strength to do “one more thing”.

Psalm 46:10 is familiar to all of us, “Be still and know that I am God!” It is always a reminder for me that, I should do that – exchange my busyness for stillness.  But after I mentally file that reminder, I go on with my day.  However, as I read the same verse in The Passion Translation, “Surrender your anxiety!” Be silent and stop your striving and you will see that I am God.”, “being still” requires more than sitting by and doing nothing. 

I want the words, “I am being still” to be as valuable as “I am busy”, but before they can be valuable to the world, they have to become valuable to me.

Psalm 37:7 says, “Quiet your heart in his presence and pray; keep hope alive as you long for God to come through for you.” (TPT) Being still in a posture of prayer is as proactive as checking the boxes on my to do list. I no longer want to allow my virtual agenda to rob me of being real with Him!  I want to look at blank spaces on my calendar and know they were spent doing my Father’s will, not my own, and I did not miss “it” at all.  That in every season, no matter what circumstances the Prince of this World, should choose to throw at me, I am closer to my Father in Heaven than ever.
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