Miscellaneous

Flashback Friday: The Place Before The New Season

Ladies enjoy this flash from the past which was originally posted on September 17, 2013.

changing seasonsI feel like I am in the place right before a new season begins.  I know I have talked about seasons before, but it is now registering that the place in between seasons is just as important as the new season.  I could go on and on about why I feel like I’m in between seasons, about the job-related woes I’ve been facing lately, about the growing pains and about even the blessings and lessons that have been bestowed upon me by our Amazing God, but I think I just want to encourage you to not rush that new season and to not be rattled by the distractions and the pressures of the season you are already in as well as don’t be afraid of the responsibilities, challenges or what seems impossible that comes with the new season.

You see the Israelites were in that place before a new season began too.  They had been enslaved and oppressed by the Egyptians for a long time and they cried out in misery. The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering.  So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey—the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites.  And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them.  So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.” (Exodus 3:7-10 NIV) God preserved a Hebrew baby’s life and this baby’s destiny led him to Pharaoh’s house, to a burning bush, and then to the elders of Israel.  “Go, assemble the elders of Israel and say to them, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—appeared to me and said: I have watched over you and have seen what has been done to you in Egypt.  And I have promised to bring you up out of your misery in Egypt into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—a land flowing with milk and honey.’  (Exodus 3:16-17 NIV)  Moses and the Israelites were in the place before a new season began.

There was uncertainty, fear, and opposition from an arrogant, rebellious king; Pharaoh even increased the Israelites’ workloads and their work seemed impossible to accomplish.   Pharaoh said, “Lazy, that’s what you are—lazy! That is why you keep saying, ‘Let us go and sacrifice to the Lord.’  Now get to work. You will not be given any straw, yet you must produce your full quota of bricks.”  The Israelite overseers realized they were in trouble when they were told, “You are not to reduce the number of bricks required of you for each day.”  When they left Pharaoh, they found Moses and Aaron waiting to meet them, and they said, “May the Lord look on you and judge you! You have made us obnoxious to Pharaoh and his officials and have put a sword in their hand to kill us.”  (Exodus 5:17-21 NIV)

Leading the Israelites out of Egypt was an overwhelming task in Moses’ eyes; he was trying to pass it off (Exodus 4:10-13), and when Pharaoh increased the workload and Israelite overseers complained to Moses and his brother Aaron, he got discouraged and complained to God.  Even though the place before the new season can have some discouraging and overwhelming moments, it is also a time of preparation (Moses was being prepared to lead the Israelites), promise, a chance to grow closer to God and for Him to show His glory as well as a chance to unite as a body of Christ.  Moses and Aaron brought together all the elders of the Israelites and Aaron told them everything the Lord had said to Moses. He also performed the signs before the people, and they believed. And when they heard that the Lord was concerned about them and had seen their misery, they bowed down and worshiped.  (Exodus 4:29-31 NIV) God also said to Moses, “I am the Lord.  I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as God Almighty, [a] but by my name the Lord[b] I did not make myself fully known to them.  I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, where they resided as foreigners.  Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant.  (Exodus 6: 2-5 NIV)

We all know after several plagues and the death of all of the Egyptians firstborns, including Pharaoh’s firstborn, God’s mighty hand rescued His people and Pharaoh sent the Israelites away.  The Israelites left with not only the clothes on their backs but with what we call reparations today.  Praise goes right here!  That new season looked like it would never come but God is a covenant keeper, keeps His promises and reminds us that there is a time and a season for everything so that means whatever you going through, that too shall pass.  I am reminded of another Israel account of them being in between seasons.  It was when Joshua, Caleb and other men from the tribes of Israel were sent out to investigate the land of Canaan, the Promised Land.  When Moses sent them to explore Canaan, he said, “Go up through the Negev and on into the hill country.  See what the land is like and whether the people who live there are strong or weak, few or many.  What kind of land do they live in? Is it good or bad? What kind of towns do they live in? Are they unwalled or fortified?  How is the soil? Is it fertile or poor? Are there trees in it or not? Do your best to bring back some of the fruit of the land.” (It was the season for the first ripe grapes.)  (Numbers 13:17-20 NIV)

But what happened?  The men, except Caleb and Joshua, came back with a bad, discouraging report causing the people to rebel and complain once again.  Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.”  But the men who had gone up with him said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.”  And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size.  We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”  (Numbers 14: 30-33 NIV) The people complained and cried “if only we had died in Egypt or in the wilderness.”  They even suggested selecting a leader and returning to Egypt.  That complaining, fear, and rebellion cost many of them (except Caleb and Joshua) their place in the Promised Land.  If you don’t keep your focus on God and remember His promises and how mighty He is, you would look at your new season with a distorted view.  You will let fear keep you from moving forward and you will make the process that much more uncomfortable.  That place before the new season begins will be a place of fear and turmoil instead of blessing and lesson.

Dear Daddy,

Help me to not forsake the place before the new season begins.  It is uncomfortable, but it is a process that is needed to prepare me for my destiny.  It is where You can cleanse me and strip me of those things I am unable to carry into a new season.  It is the place where I am to learn patience and grow close to You, trusting in You all the way.  It is a chance for You to show how mighty and how holy You are.  Thank You for Your concern, compassion and strength.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to learn how to abandon self, depend on God, and check your way of thinking while dwelling in the place that precedes the new season.  For the rest of your life, moving forward requires these three things.  Appreciate what this place can teach you, because God does not want you to stay here and when it is time to move, you don’t want to miss the change of seasons.

What transitions are you making in life?

Read related EmpowerMoments:  Seasons and Seasons Change

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Ms. Tannika Moore loves the Lord and loves to write! Besides writing poetry or editing written work for family and friends, she currently works for NEIU Educational Talent Search program, helping high school students prepare for college. As a compassionate person and encourager, she loves to encourage people according to God’s Word and help them to see, think and become better through her support, actions and writing. This April, Tannika published her first book, a book of her poetry, titled Setting The Captive Free. For more details, visit stcfpoetrybook.com.  On July 10th of this year, she  also launched her new Christian clothing and apparel brand called Fruitful & Fabulous inspired by John 15:8.  For more details about Fruitful & Fabulous, visit fruitfulandfabulous.com.  Her favorite scripture comes from Philippians 1:6, “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you shall perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

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