Monday, February 18, 2013

Serving the Savior in Sync with the Seasons

Serving the Savior in Sync with the Seasons
Rabbi Yehudah ben Shomeyr and Moriah bat Shofar

It is one thing to move to the meat of a different drum and quite another to break dance while everyone is waltzing, or sunbathe when everyone else is ice skating!

We read in the first several chapters of Genesis how Adonai set the Universe and wound it up like a great clock and how everything moves in sync and precision; how our trip around the sun takes us through the seasons (Gen. 1:14). We were meant to move in harmony and unison with these celestial and cosmic movements.

It is ironic how mankind is the only creation of the Almighty that does not remain in its created station. We were created to be air breathing, land dwellers to till and cultivate the earth from which we sprang; but we are not fully content with that. We desire to expand our territory and exert our dominion over sea and air as well. We are the only ones of HaShem’s creations that attempts to conquer realms we were not created for. Mankind has created scuba gear to put or presence in the sea. We have no gills but we desire to conquer the oceans. We were not created with feathers and wings, but with hang gliders we too can soar with the birds above the treetops. We desire to walk on water like Yeshua (Jesus) and Kefa (Peter), so we invented ice-skates to mimic that feat. Why? Because we were created in the image of Almighty G-d and it is our way of taking dominion (Gen. 1:26-28). Taking dominion is one thing, but to live and operate contrary to nature is quite another. It’s one thing to domesticate, train and utilize wild horses, but we don’t produce offspring with them or eat hay and grass as they do!

So what am I saying!?

I am talking about how we live our lives according to the seasons. Many of us, despite our faith and freedom in Messiah, nonetheless live weak, weary and defeated lives. We are depressed and do not know why. For some reason we feel we are beating our head against a brick wall but can’t really say why. We feel stifled and out of step for some odd reason. We feel out of place, out of sync with something.


Because though we are created to have dominion over the earth and all that dwells in it, we sometimes think we are too far above nature to take cues from it. We fail to serve the LORD in sync with the seasons. Just look a King Solomon. Though a King, chosen by GOD from the Chosen People, Solomon allowed humble nature to be his teacher. The Proverbs are full of spiritual and practical lessons we can take from the insect, plant and animal kingdoms!

In the winter, plants cease to actively grow and produce flowers and fruit; the sap retreats deep within the tree and many animals crawl into their burrows and hibernate while other species relocate to warmer climates.  So why do we teach classes and have great evangelistic crusades? No! This is a season when the work is done. Do you ever see a farmer plan and plant his field in the dead of winter, in the midst of a blanket of snow? No! Why? Because the harvest season is over and planting season has yet to begin. It’s not the time to plant, its futile, the farmer will get no yield from such a foolish activity.

Just as nature turns inward, we too are to turn our thoughts and actions inward. It is a season of rest, contemplation and mediation. Just as some animals hibernate, it is a time to allow our Heavenly Father to download things in our spirit. It’s a time we take personal stock and inventory and confront things about ourselves we seen during the summer but were too busy to deal with. Just like the Maccabees of old it is time to cleanse our temples. Notice also there are no Major Biblical Festivals in in the winter only the minor holiday of Chanukah. It’s a season to sit at the Masters feet, like Mary (Luke 10) and soak it all in. It is a time for personal Bible study, to allow HaShem to be our teacher. Why?

So we can grow, so we can take the things He instilled in us during the winter and like sprouts and blossoms; grow and bring forth new life. Hibernating animals wake up and come alive with the nature around them. Many baby animals are born in the Spring and it is a season for El Shaddai to birth new life in us. Whether it be new teachings, ideas or ministries. It’s time to plant spiritual seed in others as many of us plant new seeds and bulbs in the ground. Nature seems to come alive and sing, it’s time for praise and worship gatherings. It’s the season of new life and freedom. After all, it was Spring when Israel left the bonds of Egyptian slavery behind and was birthed as a nation. It’s when Yeshua became our Passover sacrifice and rose from the dead and we resurrect with Him in the newness of life! It is a time to bring forth what our Father gave us during the dark, quite solemn days of winter. You’re not hibernating in Spring or trying to give birth in the winder are you?  

Summer is when things are in full swing, where we tend the seeds we planted in the spring. Where beavers build dams and predators hunt. It is a time spiritually when we are ministering, working for the Kingdom and working in His vineyard full force. This is when classes are taught, programs get underway, mission trips and crusades take place. This is when you weed, fertilize, water and prune the spiritual seeds you’ve sown in the spring. Summer is when wars are waged and battles are fought, physically and spiritually. It is not time to hibernate and meditate and do self-examinations. It is time for planning and the execution of those plans.

Soon, before you know it, there’s a nip in the air; animals shed their old mangy coats and grow thick new ones, trees put forth a new layer of forest litter; so too for us as we shed the old of the year from our lives and prepare for our winter of introspection.

In the fields, the harvest takes place and it’s time to reap what we worked all summer for; to reap the rewards of our labor and to enjoy its fruits. Even the fall Feast of Leviticus 23 reflect this also. It is time to congratulate one another on jobs well done. It is a time of maturation and discipleship. It is also a time of thanksgiving and praise and worship gatherings. It is time for homecomings and reunions and the celebration of family and friends. It is also a time to say our goodbyes as we prepare to spiritually hibernate for the winter.

Are you struggling spiritually? Is it because your spiritual service to the L-RD is out of sync with the seasons?