BY: Churck Boatman
CEM's Executive Director
“Seasons” is a term I hear in Christian conversation these days. As we read in Genesis 8:2, it’s a very biblical concept: “As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.” This was God’s promise of faithfulness to Noah after the great flood. It should be no surprise, then, that our spirits should seek to order the elements of our lives according to the principle of seasons.
In the natural world, each season has its own kind of weather. In the Midwest and South, springtime often comes with powerful tornadoes that leave a trail of destruction behind them. The young people whom God sends to CEM come to us in the springtime of their lives, most of them having already experienced some devastating blows that threatened to destroy them.
But springtime can also be a period of tremendous growth. Warm days and gentle rains cause tender shoots to break forth in new life. So it is at CEM. The sunlight of God’s love mediated through caring staff and interns helps spiritual life blossom anew in our students.
Summertime—where many of the rest of us are in life—should be a time of significant production. It’s a time for developing the spiritual resources and godly character traits that will carry us on into the later seasons of life prepared for whatever may come. We frequently see this here at CEM, as students and interns come back for a visit or send a letter or email sharing the glad news of lives that are going well because of what they experienced here.
Fall is the season for enjoying the harvest of lives well lived for Christ and others. It’s a time of thanksgiving as we look back on God’s grace that carried us through the fiery heat and storms of summer. It’s a time in which many of the long-time supporters of this ministry find themselves, using their resources to invest in “next year’s crop”—the tender plants which need God’s nurturing warmth in the springtime of their lives.
For the Christian, after the winter of this life has taken its toll, an eternal springtime will come. It’s a time when God’s promises will have been fulfilled. How joyful that new season will be! Whatever season you are in, may God be with you!