By Troy Thomas
I’m one of those people that love the warm, even hot, weather of Spring and Summer. One of life’s greatly under-appreciated pleasures is feeling the sun on my face for the first time each spring after a long, cold Winter. There is something infinitely exciting about the promise of Spring that excites the soul. Yet, in God’s economy, there is also an equal importance in Fall —and ultimately the dead of Winter.
Solomon reminds us in Ecclesiastes 3:1-2 NKJ
- To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:
- A time to be born,
And a time to die;
A time to plant,
And a time to pluck what is planted…
Each Fall, as I think about the seasonal death that we see all around us, I am reminded of the teachings of Christ.
John 12:24-25 NKJ
- Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.
- He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.
Even though Fall and Winter are not my favorite seasons, I have learned to enjoy them as a metaphor for eternal life. I am again drawn to the paradoxical words of Christ.
If I die to myself, only then will I truly experience life. If I give away my life, only then will I gain life that cannot be taken away.
Paul echoes the teaching of Christ in I Corinthians 15:35-36 NKJ
- But someone will say, “How are the dead raised up? And with what body do they come?”
- Foolish one, what you sow is not made alive unless it dies.
Finally, as I wonder about this death and life paradox, I realize that each rebirth is granted from God Himself. Just as dead leaves do not choose life, they are granted life from the Giver of Life.
John 15:16 NKJ
- You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, and whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.