Understanding the Spiritual Season You are In
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As creation reveals, all of life is cyclical. The sun rises and sets; the human body deteriorates and rebuilds; the planets orbit around the sun, the growth of spring follows the death of winter. Through observing the handiwork of the Creator, we can also recognize that our human lives are filled with seasons and cycles. And at times we may feel as though one season will never end, but we only have to look to God’s creation and recognize, “this too shall pass.” So in order to live an intentional life, an important key is understanding the spiritual season you are in.
What are the spiritual seasons and how do I flourish in each one?
When we don’t understand the spiritual season we are in, we may find it difficult to embrace the season’s gifts or challenges and make the necessary adjustments to thrive and move on in a healthy way. It’s even possible to get stuck in this season for months or years on end, because we refuse to acknowledge the season and learn from it.
As a Sozo ministry in Chandler, AZ, we’ve seen a lot of individuals break free from never-ending seasons of depression and trial, and walk into seasons of joy and contentment. Some seasons may feel more uncomfortable than others, but without winter there would be no spring. And for us, certain aspects of our experience often have to die in order for new growth to spring up.
With that in mind, here are four seasons of the soul we’ve observed and some lessons we’ve learned along the way.
1.The Wilderness Season
Wilderness seasons are often defined by lack, waiting, and suffering. A wilderness season may be precipitated by the loss of a loved one, a battle with disease, the loss of a job, the end of a cherished relationship, or another challenging experience. In these seasons, you may feel very lonely, and you may feel as though God has abandoned you.
At times like these, I love to read the Psalms of David. This verse is a favorite:
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” ~ Psalm 34:18 (NIV)
Remember in these seasons that you are not alone. You may find pressing into the presence of God is a great challenge, but those who have persisted can testify that God’s presence in these times is one of the sweetest experiences we can have.
2. The Pruning Season
A pruning season is a time of testing and preparation. Often pruning seasons require us to get real with the sin in our lives so we can step into something greater in the next season. In a pruning season, wrong thoughts, beliefs, or actions hold us back from the growth we’re seeking. Depending on how we handle this season, it may be short or it may be long.
If you’ve been in a pruning season for a long period of time, it may seem like a dark night of the soul: a test or trial you feel you’ll never escape. And failing to shift your wrong thinking, beliefs, and actions could lead to depression or even loss of faith.
In seasons of pruning, it’s important to trust and believe that God tests those he loves. His goal is never to cause you to slip or fall. Rather, see it as an invitation to let go of what is holding you back and embrace the goodness He has for you. When we do fall, He is there with an outstretched arm to lift us up.
3. The Growing Season
A season of growth in life comes with both moments of excitement and pain. In order to grow, we must be stretched and sometimes put in uncomfortable situations. But the results are worth the momentary discomfort.
How do you know if you are in a growing season? One way to identify this season is that the discomfort and pain stem from opportunity, not loss or moral failure. This kind of discomfort should be pressed through and endured with tenacity, because through the process, God is enlarging your capacity to handle what He has next for you. It’s a sign that He trusts you and wants to give you more.
4. The Harvesting Season
The harvesting season is all about seeing the fruits of your labor. It’s common to feel immense amounts of joy and happiness in these seasons. But a harvest season can also be a busy season filled with a lot of work. As you begin to reap what you sow, you may feel overwhelmed with the responsibility that has been given to you.
In these seasons, be sure to take the time to set proper boundaries, rest, and simply enjoy the rewards of your hard work. Aso be aware of becoming complacent or ungrateful. This season is enjoyed to the fullest when you acknowledge it with gratitude and continue to cling to God.
Agave Sozo is Here to Help
If you’re feeling stuck or unable to cope with the season you are in, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. At Agave Sozo in Chandler, we’re clear to distinguish ourselves from professional Christian counseling, but those who participate in inner healing sessions testify of feeling as though a burden were lifted and their relationship with the Lord became deeper and more intimate afterward. If that sounds like just what you need, schedule an appointment with us today.