We live in a world full of cycles. There are cycles of seasons: winter, spring, summer, fall. There are phases of the moon: new moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, third quarter moon, waning crescent, all the way back to new moon. There are cycles of the tides: high tide, low tide. Cycles of plants in bloom, the water cycle, re-cycling, nutrient cycles, and even cycles within our own bodies based on how they function such as the respiratory system, parasympathetic nervous systems, and the autonomic nervous systems.
We live in these cycles, and acknowledge them freely when it comes to the realization that we know the moon will continue to change, the sun with continue to rise and to set, the tides will forever move from high to low, and the water from the earth will continue to evaporate and then pour again in precipitation. So WHY oh WHY do we not believe that our emotions and feelings have this same power? Really think about it, every time we begin to feel really sad about something it’s as if something in our minds takes over and makes us feel stuck. We feel as if this emotion will never end, we feel as if the stress will never end, we feel as if the overwhelming feelings will never end.
Now, it is SO VERY IMPORTANT to feel the feelings. We have to feel the feelings, or we never truthfully acknowledge them, and we never truly process through what we need to, or never seek to understand the deeper meaning behind what might be going on. Sweeping the emotions under the rug only causes numbness. And “we can’t selectively numb” (thank you, Brene Brown). We can’t try to mask the unhelpful feelings and still expect to later be able to experience the fullness of Joy, the fullness of Happiness, the fullness of new creation, etc. However, just as we must feel the feelings, we also must put in the extra effort to acknowledge that these feelings and these circumstances will also come in cycles. There is nothing that is permanent or certain in this earthly life except for death, and even then (when you believe in Jesus) you get to keep living forever.
Sometimes we treat emotions and feelings as certain because we just simply cannot stand the long game. We don’t like to wait for the goodness. Isn’t it amazing though what happens when we accept the lot we’ve been given? Once we finally accept that fall is still after summer, and sunrises precede sunsets, it allows us to live in freedom. It becomes something that we relinquish control over. It allows us to live in the space that we are fluid beings in many ways, and we are fully capable of having ups and downs like the tides. Relinquishing the control gives way to the freedom, because we are surrendering our trust over to something bigger than ourselves. THAT is where I want to live. I want to live in the reasons and seasons of life, and acknowledge the progress made along the way as well as acknowledge the hard work it takes to get there.
When we live in the reasons and seasons, when we acknowledge the growth as well as the suffering it takes to get there, THIS is when we are living in sustainable change, and sustainable maturity. No longer circumstantial change, or circumstantial maturity forced on us by life, but real lasting change within ourselves and our environments.
What season are you currently in in your life? What is the reason you may be living in this season?