So, this week’s question of the week is: How are you affected by the rhythm of days, seasons and years?

Here in the tundra – woops I mean longest winter ever in Nebraska – I find this question interesting.

We are currently waiting for the weather to warm up to get a few home improvement items done on the house. It turns out there’s a process of order for exterior home improvements. We waited and saved up the money in the winter, so that in the spring, we could do our research and hire just the right people for our home. We’re getting new siding, which means we need to have the trim painted, and a new garage door. And as of late, a hail storm swung by and suggested new gutters and roof. Sounds great! Let’s do it.

But you have to paint the trim first. And you can’t pain the trim until the temperature stays about 40° so that the paint doesn’t wilt or freeze or something. The garage door, however can be installed. So, we wait for the weather and all of our home improvement guys are on stand-by. *Side-note – we considered doing some of it our selves and on a warm weekend, started painting the trim, but I threw my back out and the kids were making a mess. So, we deduced it’d be better for my back and our family to just tack on trim painting to the list of hires. It was the fastest 20-minute home improvement project you’ve ever seen. And our house now adorns a very nice Sanford & Son’s theme. The neighbors and I await for the weather to grace our house, making this cold weather linger a little too long – like the last guy at the party.

Last week, someone suggested , “Why is the cold so hard?” And then I went on a rant about how it feels like we’re living in the Hunger Games and that someone is controlling the weather and trying to freeze the weak ones out and that it’ll never end until there is a winner.

Quite frankly, I thought my answer was brilliant. But I’m pretty sure the victim of my rant simply regretted posing the question in the first place. The point of my rant was the ridiculousness of our reaction to the weather. It happens. Let’s just face it, you have 6-8 months of winter, starting in October.

I dare one person to gripe about the heat this summer here in Nebraska if/when it finally warms up.

The thing is, here in Nebraska, Spring and warmer weather is great anticipation. So we wait and we wait and wait for change. I’d suggest we be the change here, but we can’t change the weather (unless we’re in the Hunger Games).

However, I grew up in Houston – meteorogically speaking, Houston, Texas is the armpit of America – it’s hot and sticky and kind of stinky. Houston folk welcome the rain because it “cools off” the heat-ridden area. For the record, no it doesn’t. But it’s what Houstonians appreciate. Down in Houston, they welcome fall. There is no winter, nor spring in my opinion. So, they have summer for 8 months, fall for 4 months.

I’m sure there’s some great places that have all four seasons. I’m starting to yearn for a tropical climate year round. But then again, I love the snow in the winter.

I love summer for it’s warmth and bright beautiful days. I love the long days and short nights. Heck, I even love sharing the warm summer nights with the mosquitoes, because it’s only confirmation that it’s toasty warm outside.

I love spring for all it’s promise of hope: the rain, the grass growing, the budding trees. Even the hail a few weeks ago was so fascinating to watch.

I love the fall for the cooling down, the crisp air, and the celebration of harvest of veggies.

And then there’s winter. I love the snow. Snow, in my opinion, is a promise of light. It covers up the dead or dormant brown drabness of plants and grass, and brightens the earth with white, despite the drab grey overcast. And now that my kids are old enough, the snow is super gorgeous while I watch them shovel it instead of me.

I do love the seasons – all of them. But I think what I do best is love the transitions into each season. And that’s what we do in life, right? We handle the initial change really well. We start a diet, or a new prayer time, or a new job, a new phase of our kids’ life, a spiritual challenge for self-improvement. We handle the transition really well. But it’s the mundanenes of the situation, the third week into the diet, when we realize, “Oh wow, this is going to go longer than I’d thought.” And then what do we do?

Well, it’s a matter of knowing your seasons – and the fact that you can’t control the seasons or how long they last. (Unless you’re President Snow…and even he kinda lost his grip on control, now didn’t he?) What you can control is your commitment to the transition – you’re roll with the punches, if you will. It’s after the transition phase has passed by and it’s just the continual phase. Maintaining seems to be my hardest gig.

When a new year rolls through, I don’t review last year’s resolution and critique how I maintained it. I simply cover up any follow-through with a new resolution. When a new month or season begins, how many of us say, “Man, I really rocked January out!” No, we don’t do that. So, it’s a matter of living in the season we’re in, counting our blessings as they are, not as we hope they’ll be later. Acknowledge the diversity of each season, of our lives and our faith, in all it’s beauty, and live in it now.

At current, that’s what I’m doing, I’m sitting in a home that with half-and-very-rough-painted trim, blue tape on half of the windows, a garage door that matches our future siding, but not the current siding, and hail dented roof. The roof kept us safe from the hail. The house keeps us warm while we wait out the chill of the weather. And so we wait, in transition. And it’s beautiful.

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