Anna Maher interned for Steve Backlund in 2011-2012. She co-authored Higher Perspectives along with Steve, and recently published her first book, Embracing Mystery: A 21 Day Journey of Hope. Read her guest blog post about seasons below:
3 Tips on How to Love Any Season of Your Life
Life is made up of seasons. Sometimes we love the season and sometimes we want to escape it. I love to talk about hope and the goodness of God, but sometimes we can all struggle with what to do during the tough seasons. I believe that even in the hard seasons there is His goodness is still evident. I believe there are gifts to be received even in the toughest of times. There are special aspects of His kindness and tenderness that we can access during the trying times.
Here are a few ways to help you love your life in any current season:
1. Recognize that you are growing.
“Enlarge the place of your tent,
stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
strengthen your stakes.
For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
your descendants will dispossess nations
and settle in their desolate cities.
– Isaiah 54:2-3
I think of this verse at times when I feel especially stretched. I am growing! If I go to the gym and never challenge my muscles, I will not see the results I desire. Growth requires stretching. When things get tough, remind yourself that you are expanding and growing. When you emerge from a challenging season, your capacity is larger. The things that used to be challenging, will be easier. You will emerge from the current trials you are facing as a stronger person.
2. Trust God about your current season.
God is after your trust! When you come into a new season, there are new things that demand a greater level of trusting Him.
When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise—
in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
– Psalms 56:3-4
We are so often tempted to compare our current season with those around us. This is never fruitful. I challenge you to believe the words of David:
Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. I will praise the Lord, who counsels me (Psalms 15:5-6).
He has good things for you in this season. Looking around only distracts you from those things. The enemy loves to try and convince us of what we are missing by pointing out others’ lives. This is a dangerous trap to slip into. There is so much freedom in believing that His boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places for you!
3. choose to cultivate a thankful heart.
It is very hard to stay discontent with a thankful heart! There is something about thankfulness that shifts our perspective from what we do not have, to what we do have. What is beautiful about your current season? For which relationships are you thankful? What gifts do you have in this season?
The quickest way to love your current season is to focus on what you already have rather than getting caught up in what you do not have.
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
I pray that today you find the joy in your current season! I know there are good gifts for you today. May your heart be filled with trust and thankfulness as you grow and learn in this season!
About Anna Maher
Anna pastors in Texas with her husband, Chuck Maher. Visit their ministry website at www.catalyst-ministries.org.