Summer: The Season of Growth
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 (Ecclesiastes 3:1-2, New King James Version)
Let me begin with a disclaimer: I don’t like summer. My favorite seasons are spring and fall, and winter and I enjoy a good working relationship, but not summer. I don’t usually complain and I typically tolerate it with a good attitude, but that doesn’t mean I enjoy it. It comes about this time every year and a mild sense of dread arises from deep within me. I don’t like the heat, the mugginess, or the lack of structure. I just don’t like summer.
One thing I dislike about summer is that nothing seems to happen. Life just seems to get put on hold for a few months and then we start back when the kids go back to school. Summer is like the commercial break of life. Remember watching old-school television as a child? Unless you had to leave the room, what you really wanted was for the commercials to end so you could get back to your show. But I am learning that summer is important, even if it doesn’t seem like it.
The Bible uses a lot of farming examples that are easy to miss unless you think like a farmer. The above passage is an example of this. It says there is a time to plant and a time to pluck. This is true, but plants aren’t like buried treasure that you put in the ground and dig up six months later. Something important happens between the spring when you plant and the fall when you harvest; growth. Plants are alive and so they grow. That’s what plants do every summer. If you drive through the country in the summer, you’ll see plants growing. Even in the city, you can see trees that are neither budding nor shedding their leaves; they are growing.
The same passage says there is a time to be born and a time to die, but most of life happens between those two times. This also applies to your spiritual life. The day of your salvation was your time to be born again, and while you will not experience spiritual death, Jesus wants you maturing during your time on earth. You are in the summer of life and you should be growing!
How do we grow? There are practical things you can do, but ultimately, you grow as you spend time with the Lord. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 3:7, “So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase.” People plant seeds and have children, but God is the source of their growth. Likewise, God is the source of our growth. Summer is a beautiful picture of God working silently and invisibly to mature us from baby believers into mature, fruitful saints who are ready to go with Him when harvest time comes. This summer, as you see fields of growing crops, thank God for His work of growth in your life.