Tidings of Comfort and Joy

God rest ye merry, gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay
Remember, Christ, our Saviour
Was born on Christmas day
To save us all from Satan’s power
When we were gone astray
O tidings of comfort and joy,
Comfort and joy
O tidings of comfort and joy

From God our Heavenly Father
A blessed Angel came;
And unto certain Shepherds
Brought tidings of the same:
How that in Bethlehem was born
The Son of God by Name.
O tidings of comfort and joy,
Comfort and joy
O tidings of comfort and joy

“Fear not then,” said the Angel,
“Let nothing you affright,
This day is born a Saviour
Of a pure Virgin bright,
To free all those who trust in Him
From Satan’s power and might.”
O tidings of comfort and joy,
Comfort and joy
O tidings of comfort and joy

Now to the Lord sing praises,
All you within this place,
And with true love and brotherhood
Each other now embrace;
This holy tide of Christmas
All other doth deface.
O tidings of comfort and joy,
Comfort and joy
O tidings of comfort and joy

Winter, a season some don’t enjoy. All the trees are bare, cold temperatures, bad roads, and flu season. After hearing God in the last post about how He is in the season I looked around on the ride home Sunday seeking God in what I saw. Everything was covered in snow, and as I passed a covered corn field I thought of how the soil is preparing for next year. There is a process that happens in all living things during winter that promotes health, growth, and new life in the season to come. Dying is part of that process.   As believers we go through winter seasons, just as we go through spring seasons and hot summer seasons. God, the Creator of all things, created cycles, stages of growth, seasons. We, as part of His creation are no exemption to the seasons.

In each season, God knows how to grow us. His hand is as delicate as the snow fall. The snow, the purity of His presence, blankets us, covering us. It may look like things are dying, but really they are just dormant.  There is a vine outside of my Dad’s front door that he swears is dead every year, and every year it comes back hearty and healthy. Every year he debates cutting it down, and every year there are pretty new purple flowers that bloom. That’s his cycle to accompany the plants cycle. LOL

But I think that is true for Christians as well. We might not be active for God in the winter season, because we are covered in His presence, waiting for the next season. A season of new life! He is regenerating the soil of our hearts, nourishing us, preparing us for the next season’s use. Other believers though might be tempted to “cut us out” thinking us dead (unproductive), we can feel some real cold spells from that, but if we are intimate with God we know what He is doing even when we don’t, and we trust Him even when we don’t understand.

He knows exactly when the seasons should fall in our lives. I remember a couple of years ago a huge snow storm plowed through in October before the leaves had fallen off the trees and it caused major damage. Tree limbs broke off and there were huge power failures all over the state. God knows that too much pressure in the wrong season can result in major damage and even “power failure” spiritually in our lives. His hand works to help us, not to harm us.

He is wise in all He does and knows our needs better than we do. In a dream one time – I had a couple of coats in my closet of new clothes. I was running late for work and hastily grabbed the heavy coat, ignoring the suggestion to take the lighter weight one, running out of the house. As I got in my car I had to take the coat off because I was getting too hot. It wasn’t the right season to wear it and the person suggesting the lighter coat knew it better than I did. God knows how He made us, knows the work needed to be done on us, and has each of us in different seasons. It’s ok if I’m in the “lighter coat” right now, and it’s ok if we are dormant for a season.

2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

God is at work in us, even when all we hear is silence. The silence and the dormancy in our lives can make us question where we are, and where God is. There can even be a coldness of feeling alone in whatever God is doing, and wherever He has you at times. But in the silence there can be peace. Peace from noise that has been removed from our life. Noisome troubles that plagued us, issues we couldn’t escape from, old things that have no place in us now have now gone and there is peace and quiet for a time. Take the comfort and joy and cherish them in that time. Soon the season will change. Thankfulness in each season will deepen the blessing in each one. The more we align with God’s heart for us, the greater the harvest He will see in us.

“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.”
John 10:14-15

So as the song sings, let this be Tidings of Comfort and Joy to know the seasons are for our benefit and good. To save us all from powerful things that would lead us astray and harm us. Fear not then and sing praises to the King that there is beauty in each season as well as purpose. He brings Tidings of Comfort and Joy to you in all that He does.

Peace be to you all

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