Within the changing seasons of life, I think I’m in an autumnal one of body, soul and spirit. My hair has almost lost its golden glints and shaded to silver, although winter-white is yet to come.
It’s an unsettling period where hopes and dreams remain unfulfilled, curl small, wither away.
Life’s hourglass is bottom-heavy and it’s a miracle I’m not as well with all the sitting around I seem to do.
At times like this I can feel left out of the stream of things as life flows swiftly on while I plod and paddle at its edges.
And I’m tempted to feel that God has forgotten about me too.
What happened to the hopes I cherished?
How can I remain content when I’m a shelf-sitting, edge-dwelling invisible woman?
Answers come there none. My dreams seem turned to dust.
When I wish I could be anywhere but here and anyone but me. But I have a Father who wants me to be here, who wants me to be me” ~ Emily Wierenga
But what I do hear (repeatedly this year, this season) is a clear call from the Lord asking me to rest more in Him, reminding me to seek Him first and foremost, requiring me to listen, surrender to the silence and staying still.
Because there is always a purpose in the pain, the hollowing out.
We may feel like last season’s cast off clothes, packed away, usefulness outgrown.
We may want to wave a white (or screaming red) flag to the world, signalling our presence.
We may be discouraged when we desire so many good things which seem to be denied us.
We don’t yet see beauty emerging from the paring away, laying bare, dying back.
I’m trying to let my wounded ego lead me to Jesus ~ Emily Wierenga
Until we turn to the One who made us, who has our best interests at heart, and we find reassurance for our anxious souls.
God reminds us there is always work going on in the background of our lives. Each day we are becoming more defined and refined into the image of Christ.
The work is deep, inner, largely unannounced, continual. We’re always a work In Progress. Not standing still at all.
Being readied for the next big thing. Prepared for a purpose beyond our ability to perceive it as we stretch our faith to receive it.
Maybe this is a season to trust, to wait and anticipate burgeoning new life to come while Love Incarnate is being birthed in and through us.
Love takes time, sunshine, rain, weeding. There’s no hurry in love, only waiting and resting. Like a plant stretching ~ Emily Wierenga
And while we wait? Are we just twiddling our thumbs?
Oh no. There is work in consciously agreeing to rest, in obedient surrender, believing for better and stepping out into new territory when time is ripe.
I hear a call to abide more in God, to rest and pray, listen well, intercede, be an encourager as I help others to birth their dreams. Your call may be very different.
But whatever we sense God leading us to do in these still seasons, maybe we can try to glimpse more of His grace and rest in being His beloved, precious child, yes?
I don’t need to do anything. I don’t need to prove anything, anymore. I don’t need to hear that I’m beautiful or smart or powerful, because Abba’s very presence says I am perfect, accepted, loved, redeemed, cherished, delighted in, and sung over. God wants to spend time with me. That is enough ~ Emily Wierenga
This post was inspired by reading Emily Wierenga’s beautiful new memoir, ‘Making It Home:Finding Peace, Identity and Purpose’. All quotes used above come from this book. I also hope to be writing a review of it soon.
You can download free sample chapters and order the book here. It’s a lovely, inspiring, heart-warming read I can really recommend.
Thanks. I am always so glad with your beautiful posts!
Aritha, I am always so glad to see you here! Thank you for your lovely support and encouragement.
oh Joy. you are an incredible writer. i found such peace in this post… what a blessing you are, my sister who’s in the autumnal seasons… autumn is my favorite season 🙂
Emily, you are an incredibly encouraging woman and a truly gifted writer whom I’m in awe of. I absolutely adored ‘Making It Home’. It touched me deeply with its raw vulnerability, moving story of love and grace, and tender heart for others. Thank you so much for blessing me by your visit!
My heart had to answer “yes” many times as I read your post. You often speak my heart, Joy. Thank you for reminding me “there is always work going on in the background of our lives. Each day we are becoming more defined and refined into the image of Christ.” Such inspiring pics and quotes by Emily, too! It sounds like a great memoir.
I have added links to both of your sites in my “What’s New This Month” post. I will be adding them to my Hope Harbor page. 🙂
Trudy, you’ll love Emily’s latest book. It will move you so much! I’m so thankful for the way our hearts often seem to be in tune with one another on this journey. And humbly grateful for the gift of words to share if they bless and help others in their walk of faith. Thanks very much for honouring the way God writes through me. I’m touched by your sweet generosity in mentioning my blogs on your site. Hoping to be able to go over and take a look as soon as possible. Bless you, my friend. Xx 🙂
Joy, this is simply stunning. Beautiful insights and perfect quotes from Emily gorgeous book.
Hi Patricia. Thank you so much for visiting and for your kindness! It’s interesting to see what Emily’s beautiful book is stirring in us, isn’t it?
This is beautiful and gives me some needed peace! Thank you!
It also makes me very eager to read the book -I’ve been hearing a lot about it lately. Thank you for sharing!
Hi Bethany. You won’t regret reading Emily’s lovely book! I was deeply affected by it. Thank you for stopping by. It’s lovely to meet you.
Beautiful post, Joy, as always. Such heart-filled, sadness-tinged words written with such grace. Particularly loved your line, “Prepared for a purpose beyond our ability to perceive it”. Thinking of you. Helen xx
Helen, I’m always thankful for your thoughts and prayers. It seems like most of life is spent in transition, doesn’t it? Whether it’s a natural part of the ageing/maturing processes or changes that arrive unexpectedly, we still have to learn to become adaptable and resilient to seasonal shifts. I take heart from trying to see an eternal purpose in an earthly eruption! I’m glad you found something here that spoke to you. Blessings of peace to you in your busyness. xx
Isn’t it wonderful when a book speaks so directly into your heart and mind, Joy? I love the bits and pieces you shared from Emily’s book, and also your own words as you process through what this autumnal season looks like for you. May God bless and comfort you as you wait and trust …
I agree, Lois. Some books can be literally life changing and transforming, the Bible most of all of course. Have you read Emily’s book? I hope you get an opportunity to do so if not. Thank you for visiting and for your sweet blessing. I appreciate it. 🙂
Your title on #TellHisStory spoke to me..I’m in a new season, with a 18 yr old son preparing to start his own life, career changes, moving toward top of the mountain of my 50’s..so much you wrote speaks to a new season of surrender, of letting go of striving and lost dreams, of resting in wisdom and God’s love. Love your simple, elegant writing!
Hi Kathy. It’s nice to know the title alone drew you to this post! I understand where you’re at in the season you are in. It can feel very unsettling when the family dynamic changes, especially when we may be altering internally and externally ourselves. I wrote a poem when my youngest son left home to go to university; it was called ‘Letting go’ and symbolised his yearning for new things while I was staying still. May you find your own peace and purpose in the days ahead as you rest in all you’ve been up to now and all you’re still becoming. Please feel free to return and keep in touch. I’d love to know how the future unfurls for you. Blessings. 🙂
Your words are just stunning. My heart has stretch marks. What an amazing sentence that describes my heart to a T. We are in a similar season of life and I resonate with all of these words you spilled out on this page. I am blessed by how well you lace the words together. Thank you friend!
I know, Mary, those words, “My heart has stretch marks” on the image are directly from Emily’s book and speak volumes to me too. It’s good to know we can accompany one another through our season of transition and change as God readies us for the next big thing coming our way, isn’t it? I’m glad this post resonated with you, and I’m blessed by your visit, my friend.
Thank you, Jennifer! I’m glad this post spoke to you, and delighted to be chosen as your featured #TellHisStory writer this week. You honour me by your kindness. 🙂