Friday, 19 April 2013

Winter is coming – Prepare!

My husband often smiles and tells me I still have too much “Queensland blood” in me because I feel the cold so much more than he does. While the Australian mainland has suffered high temperatures the past summer months, our part of Tasmania has enjoyed beautiful summer days right up until the last couple of days.  Now the bite of winter warns me to prepare for too many cold months, at least until only a few weeks before Christmas.

Spring cleaning? It is important to air the house, sort out cupboards after the house has been shut up all that long winter here. For me however, I’m discovering I need to prepare even more for Winter. Time to check the heating system, the clothes for increasingly colder days and nights.
I’ve been watching “my tree” as we now call it change colour again. Each winter it warns me the nights are colder even when the sunny days lull me into putting off preparing.

Our lives are like the seasons of the year. However, these kind of seasons may not come at the usual prescribed times like those of nature.  They vary from time to time and from age to age. In spring, no matter our number of birthdays we may feel young, full of life, getting ready more and more for new and exciting experiences. Summer comes and the heat of this season may slow us down but we enjoy fun in the sun, the maturity of years with warmth and joy. Autumn finds us realising we can’t always expect sunny days and those warm nights when sometimes we might find it even too hot to sleep. Then, sometimes before we are at all ready, the cold, biting winds and frosts of winter are with us.

Are we preparing ourselves during all seasons for those harsh spiritual winters when life goes haywire, when illness and sorry lash out at us?

This summer has seen devastating bush fires even here in our beautiful island and devastating floods in several parts elsewhere in Australia. The questions are now being asked like:
“Was enough hazard reduction burning done throughout the forests here to make controlling fires possible?”
“Were the huge dams and water systems administered correctly to minimise flooding.” Were houses in bushland and flood prone areas adequately warned and prepared?”

I want to ask the question, “When life is going well, when all is pleasant, enjoyable and satisfying, are we still preparing our hearts and faith for those very tough seasons we all have to face from time to time – those wintery seasons  in our live? No matter how much we may love God, we all have these seasons to some degree.
How do we prepare? My only answer is to make sure we do not neglect the building up of our faith. In my devotional time this morning I was reminded that Jesus Christ is the Living Bread. Only He can satisfy our spiritual hunger through the Living Word.  But am I feeding my spiritual life day by day even as I nourish my physical life day by day with regular, healthy eating and exercise?

During the pleasant, easy seasons, sometimes life becomes so full of “doing” life, it is far too easy to neglect each day my spiritual food. My physical body is neglected if only occasionally I enjoy a feast instead of a sensible, daily diet. This applies the same to my spiritual health. I need to feed on the Living Bread through His Living Word. It means regular, disciplined time with my Lord in prayer, delving into the scriptures alone as well as in the fellowship of other believers so that together we can encourage each other to prepare for those harsh, winter days. To ride triumphant through those seasons, our faith needs to be strong.
Sure, in those tough times we naturally turn more and more to the Lord, and if our spiritual beings are healthy it is easier to do just. We then realise that it is during those winter seasons we discover anew His faithfulness and our faith grows even stronger.


  1. Good word Mary. So true that we can't neglect building up our faith even when things are going well. Blessings. :)

  2. I know about this because over the years my lack of disipline and letting priorities get unbalanced has caused me to be on a poor diet of the wonderful Living Bread and the Living Word - Jesus