How to Survive the Mean Seasons
Some days in the late Spring, from April to May, I hate living in Florida. It’s not that the weather is bad, if anything, these are some of the most pleasant days of the year. The longer days are warm, but with a touch of coolness in the breeze. Humidity is in the 40s and 50s during the day, and evenings bring a chill that makes sleep deep and restful.
It’s not what the days are, but what the coming days and months will be that disconcerts me. I struggle as I think forward to next four months of heat, humidity, and hurricanes. The locals call it “The Mean Season” — especially “mean” to me, as a physical condition makes any length of time outside unhealthy. So long summer days at the beach have little appeal. I trudge through the months of June through September, anxious to feel the blessed coolness of our first “cold” front in mid-October.
There are many mean seasons in our lives – events that we know are coming, or are likely to come. I’m tempted to live in the imaginations of what they will be, groaning and gritting my teeth.
What God has taught me through my own life and others, are three truths. You need these to survive the mean seasons.
First, that today is my gift, and tomorrow is not my burden. Love what is green and growing, cool and refreshing today. Take no thought for the morrow. Each day has not only enough trouble, but is resplendent with blessing, if we open our eyes.
Second, that I can’t imagine what the future will be with any certitude. I may plan for a future event, but there is no guarantee things will work out according to that plan. It might be better than I imagine, or worse, but I guarantee that it will be different.
Third, that in burdensome times, God brings blessings and gifts. The natural spring a five minute walk from my house. Afternoon storms that bring flashes of lightning and a cool breeze just before huge drops hit my porch roof. Air conditioning! Ceiling fans! Good people who do the yard work I can’t do in the summer. Friends who understand and suggest a movie or a game night instead of a trip to the beach.
I need to inculcate these truths to survive the mean seasons.
When fear urges me to forge ahead to dire imaginations of the future, God calls me back to be present with Him. He and I keep watch for glimpses of His grace as I walk through this little journey I have on earth.