What a defining day this has been. And with an opening line like that, one might assume I’ve come to some great revelation or conclusion about a matter, or that some marvelous epiphany has occurred in my walk. No, and yes… no, nothing huge has been happening, no great changes or anything like that, but, rather, it’s wintertime. Every year about this time a defining event happens that tells me no more sitting outside, no more warm, sunny afternoons are going to be enjoyed by the water or the rose garden. It’s wintertime now. Every year with the first frost, all the leaves fall from the huge walnut trees. We watched off and on for hours this morning as the leaves fell in great clumps and the tree that was full of frosty leaves this morning is bare this afternoon. Each year I think of filming the great display of God’s handiwork, but instead, I just watch. The frost signifies the end of the hydrangeas, the roses and calla lilies.. the drooping leaves are a sad sight to me today. It seems wintertime has come early this year.
The woodstove that heats this home is continually being checked on today as we get into the groove of feeding it with wood and keeping the back porch stocked with a good supply. This is the hard season of the year… it’s the time of year that requires a different kind of work—different than summer, that is. In summer, there’s kind of a smooth, airy feel to the days — not so, in winter. So the delicious summer is a savory memory to me today. The memory or wonderful times, the heat and water of Georgia, Southern California, Oregon, and Eastern Washington… and points in between all flood my mind today as the chill has set in and is hard to shake. I don’t appreciate it, but I know I want to and so am looking for the blessing of the season. And the LORD, in His gracious mercy, is teaching me the joy of winter and cold weather, the necessary passage of seasons so dear to me. And in this instruction I find great wisdom and comfort that He carries us through the seasons of our lives and is showing me the importance of enjoying the Autumn season of my life as He brings to mind the many ways He blessed and worked in the Spring and Summer seasons of my life.
So we continued on in our study of 1Corinthians 11 this morning. Again, we didn’t even scratch the surface (no surprise here) but talked at length about God’s order in the gathering of the saints and His design for the inner working of the body and the necessity that the body be in unity. O, this is a challenging matter bcz of all the personalities that comprise the body of Christ and all the views, experiences, traditions and interpretations of God’s will for believers. Paul writes in verses 18 & 19 about divisions, etc., and we talked this over this morning and see that these things occur today probably more than ever with the advent of instant communication, books, gatherings, and a myriad of other resources readily available.
As I’ve mulled this over, I can only conclude that the answer to the divisions and schisms in the body is: the Word- for the lack of devotion to reading, studying and meditating on the Word and spending time in prayer is at the heart of troubles men face (by “men,” I mean men, women and children). Whenever there is a problem in our body we can trace it to one of those things (and in our home, for that matter!). Even misunderstandings can be traced to one of those things—well, those, and lack of bearing, believing, hoping and enduring all things in love. Whenever there’s a problem, it’s a matter of one or more of those things not being heeded. So we talked further about the bearing with one another, tarrying one for another and so on. What a blessing it is to walk with and watch the LORD.