The days are getting longer with each passing day. Trees are either green or in full bloom. Grass is lush, and birds are chirping. Spring is here, and we are experiencing more warmth and more sunshine with each sunrise. One thing to notice is the tree in the back yard as it passes into, through, and out of each season. In the spring, it will produce blooms, in the summer the leaves turn a deep green, and in the fall it becomes brilliant with colors as it leads into the winter where it appears to be dead and without life. Some seasons it seems to thrive, and others it just appears to be in survival mode. The lesson to learn is that no matter what the season, the tree never stops being a tree. It will never produce fruit in the winter nor will it be brilliantly adorned in red and yellow in the spring. The season may dictate how it’s dressed for a while, but it doesn’t change what it is.
In the 37th chapter of Genesis, Jacob had several sons. The youngest at the time, Joseph, was clearly the favored child. The last chapters of Genesis tells of Joseph’s seasons in life. He went through an exalted season and wore a fancy-colored coat to identify with. His season soon changed when he was thrown into a pit, stripped of his coat, and sold into slavery by his brothers. His fall season bore fruit and produced a harvest under the Egyptian captain Potiphar. He soon found himself back in a winter season when he was unfairly thrown into prison. When he finally emerged from prison, his spring season was upon him. He organized the protection and salvation of thousands, including his own family. He held the office of second in command of the whole land and had the full trust of the Pharaoh.
Joseph’s harvest would have never happened if he had cut his tree out of his yard in the winter season of life when all seemed lost. Joseph never ceased to be God’s chosen instrument of salvation, even when things looked their worst. I’m sure he didn’t feel like a savior or deliverer when he was in the pit, rejected by family, or locked down to a prison floor. However, the current season we’re in doesn’t dictate the amount of harvest later on. The truth is, the winter won’t last forever, and the next season will bring new growth, if we don’t give up. Seasons will come and go in our lives, but they don’t change God’s promises.
This Sunday would be a good time to talk about this further. I’ll see you at Christpoint Church, on Liberty Square, in Sparta, at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. We’re real people, living real lives, serving a real God. Welcome home.
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