“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise; and knowledge to those who have understanding.” Daniel 2:20-21
When I was a kid my extended family got together all the time. I mean all. the. time. Aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents all showed up for any national holiday, from Christmas to 4th of July. Any time a cousin had an important day – baptism, confirmation, birthday, graduation, and now weddings – everyone was there. Some summers that meant we got together about every other weekend. We loved getting together, and we still do. The thing is, the “older” of us cousins have grown up now; we’ve started families of our own, moved a little farther away, or have jobs that don’t always let us just get away whenever something is going on. I don’t make it to every family function anymore, and that change has been really difficult for me.
When you’re a kid you imagine that the way things are is the way things will always be. Sometimes I get stuck in that way of thinking even as an adult. It makes transitions in life harder to bear. In reality, though, we need things to shift throughout our lives. If we didn’t experience any deviation, we wouldn’t grow. We would miss out on so many things God has to offer us in this life. The passage from Daniel 2 makes a point that might be easy to gloss over, but for those of us who get anxious or stressed in the face of adjustments in life, this point may help put things into a fresh perspective:
“He changes times and seasons.” (emphasis mine) God is in control. Nothing in this world happens without God’s omniscient handle on the situation. Snow and rain don’t fall without God’s permission. He’s the one who turns the summer green into the autumn fire of reds, oranges and yellows. God knows when it’s just the right time for the sun to rise and set each day. Without those turns in seasons crops wouldn’t grow, animals wouldn’t survive, plants would only live for one short season. Those changes aren’t always fun, but they’re necessary for growth and continuing the life cycle.
His control extends so much farther than the weather. Not in the sense that God is some sort of master puppeteer, but that He knows what’s going on and is concerned for what is happening in your life. Not only that, but He is involved in it and working things out for your good and His glory. He allows these transitions when He knows it’s time. Those new experiences aren’t always fun, but they’re necessary for growth and for you to live the life God intends you to live. And He promises to be right there with you as you walk through whatever is ahead. He allows, causes, and even stops changes – but He himself never will. You can count on Him and trust Him never to leave you.