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A Time to Laugh and a Time to Cry

A Quiet Cove 001“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. . .” Ecclesiastes 3:1

There have been many books written about the seasons of life. A major loss or catastrophe is a season forced upon us that is out of sync with what we assumed to be normal and expected. Ecclesiastes reminds us we can learn something of importance in every season and we should not hurry through them.

Life is about change. And in the middle of change we are propelled into unfamiliar territory. It is uncomfortable and intimidating and we feel vulnerable. We want things to return to their former “normal”. We want to quickly find answers so life can become predictable, stable and comfortable again.

As we sort through the rubble caused by unwanted change, tragedies and losses we want to find answers to all the questions we have. We want to know why and make sense of things. But as we wrestle with the unknowns, we realize there may be a time to struggle and a time to let go and accept without the answers we want.

Life is about change and each season has its purpose. We continue to work in and out of seasons all our life.  We can use each season, wanted or not, to gain a new perspective of life.

Just as we use those long winter months to read or work on projects summer activities keep us from doing, we can use the season of change to broaden our perspective of life. The season of change can provide a time for reflection and an opportunity to discover something important about who we are.

If you are going through a change or grieving a loss, consider the following:

1. What are you learning in this season? What are you learning about yourself that you were unaware of before?

2. What have you gained from your loss? There are unexpected benefits we wouldn’t have known otherwise.

3. What thoughts keep you mired in anxiety over what you should have done, could have done, or didn’t do that might have contributed to this unwanted change or loss?

4. What have you gained in resiliency flexibility, tolerance, strength, faith, courage and trust? These are important attributes you may not have discovered without adversity or change.

As we expand our identity and frame of reference, we might minimize the important things we are learning. Yet it is these very things that help us grow in ways we might never have if we hadn’t gone through that season of unwanted change.

Marlene Anderson


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