Summary: This message introduces the concept that we live by and operate within seasons naturally and most importantly spiritually.
Knowing Your Seasons and Its Fruit
When Noah and his family came out of the ark after the waters had receded, they built an altar and offered a burnt offering to God on the altar. As God smelled the soothing aroma, He said in His heart the following words: “.…I will never again curse the ground for man’s sake, although the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; nor will I again destroy every living thing as I have done. While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:21b, 22) Please play close attention to what God said in verse twenty-two – that seedtime and harvest, winter and summer will not cease. In other words, as long as there is an earth, there will be seasons. When the time arrives where there are no more seasons, the earth will cease to exist.
The title of my message this morning is “Knowing Your Seasons and Its Fruit.” Webster dictionary defines a season as “any of the four divisions of a year; the time in which something takes place; the fitting time.” For the purpose of this message, I will use all three of these definitions and especially the third one; “the fitting time.” I want to pose a question to you for your consideration. How much of your life is dictated by the seasons in which you live? Is it 50%, 75%, or even 90%? As you think about your answer, consider the following:
o Most school terms starts and breaks according to the seasons.
o Most of our foods are produced according to the seasons (that is why if you live in the Midwest, you import a lot). Based on this fact alone, what we eat is influenced directly by the seasons.
o How we dress is influenced by the seasons – or it should be anyway.
o Where is choose to live can be influenced by the seasons.
o Our mental condition can be influenced by the seasons (some people get more energetic and less depressed when there are more hours with sunlight.)
o Our behavior can be influenced by the seasons.
I think you are starting to see where I am going with this. God said that as long as the earth exists, seasons will also exist. Somewhere there will always be a summer, fall, winter and spring and thus we will continue to live our lives according to the seasons. I will not plant tomatoes in December hoping for fruit in January if I live in Kansas. I will not wear clothes fit for someone living in Alaska in December if I am living in Florida. I will not expect to go to the store and purchase a fresh watermelon in January. Why? Because in each of these situations the expectations are not in compliance with the season. I have learned to live by the seasons. I have learned to establish my expectations according to the seasons. I have learned that things do happen in “due” season. If I want my watermelon I can live where they grow year round or I can wait until they are “in season” where I choose to live. If I want it to be 70 degrees in December so I can spend Christmas day on the beach, then I need to live where the “seasons” allows for this to happen – or take a vacation around Christmas where I can have what I want. My point is, the seasons do not change to accommodate me; I change to accommodate the season.
I. Seasons and Fruits
I shared with you the three definitions of season from Webster’s dictionary and discussed the impact of the four seasons on how we act and live. Now I want to transition to the second and third definition – “the time in which something takes place; the fitting time.” These definitions take us beyond the four seasons that we think about naturally. Although they can include some aspects of the natural four seasons, they are much broader in scope. For example, when we refer to our most recent 4th of July holiday, we call it just that – the 4th of July holiday. We all know that it is a nationally recognized holiday, but it is not thought of as a season – just a holiday. But when we think about Christmas, Christmas is thought of as both a holiday and a season. When it is thought of as a season it speaks to the definitions of “the time in which something takes place; the fitting time.” So what happens during this “season”? People are nicer; they reach out more to the needy; they reflect more on family and friends; they get in what is called the “holiday spirit” – being more cheerful and giving.” This lasts from around Thanksgiving to shortly after Christmas. This season includes a lot of traditions and preparations for the big day. If our government would attempt to change this holiday from December 25th to another day there would be a mass rebellion. Christmas is supposed to happen in December because that is the “fitting time” and no other time would be acceptable.