Seasons of Life
On the good side of life, for us to ever get to a new level, a new tomorrow, or the next step, something has to end. Life has seasons, stages, and phases. For there to be anything new, old things always have to end, and we have to let go of them.
~Necessary Endings, Henry Cloud
The Avett Brothers have a great song (one of many great songs) entitled, “Down with the Shine”. The first verse goes like this:
It’s in with the new, and out with the old
Out goes the warm, and in comes the cold
It’s the most predictable story told
It’s in with the young, out with the old
We all have different seasons of life. We have ups. We have downs. We have times of transition. We don’t tend to live in the same place our entire lives — even if it’s just moving across the street. We have a very mobile society that packs up and goes. I know a number of people who have children that live several states away; sometimes, in completely opposite directions.
The only constant in our world is change. Think of all the technological advances that have happened in just the past 150 years. Twenty years ago, I didn’t even have a cell phone. They were around, but I didn’t have one. Now, they are almost indispensable for most people. We don’t even have a house phone any more, and haven’t really had one that we have used in ten years.
I used an atlas to help navigate my way around the country when I would go on road trips. MapQuest was a thing, but it wasn’t always accurate. You could hop on AOL, tie up the house phone for thirty minutes, print out directions, but then you’re fumbling through four pages of turn by turn instructions. It was very tedious. I just kept a Rand McNally atlas in the back of my car. I don’t even know if kids are taught how to read maps any more.
In order for the world to keep this constant of change, things have to come to an end. New things begin; old things go away. This is true in every aspect of life. It’s true in life in general. We only have a short amount of time on this earth, and then it’s time for something new.
The important lesson we need to learn in life is that everything is temporary. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t get attached. It means we should expect everything to last forever.
As a United Methodist pastor, I’ve had this conversation with churches before. I will not be appointed to the same church forever. One day, I’ll either get moved, retire, or die. It’s just a reality. The same is true for you as well, no matter where you work. Still, embrace the season of life that you are in right now. Experience joy while you can; knowing that it is only temporary makes it taste even sweeter.
If you want to get to the end of the book, you have to finish one chapter after another. That’s life. Embrace it.