Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (NKJV)
To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven:
2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to gain, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to throw away;
7 A time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
God never fails to answer when we seek Him with all our heart. As I was praying yesterday and questioning whether I did the right thing by agreeing to meet with my husband on Sunday morning to see my daughter at the playground, God gave me this scripture. I was questioning whether I should agree to see my husband prior to the trial for short meetings like this or refrain from them.
I forgot it was Mother`s Day on Sunday, and growing up in Europe, I am not used to celebrating Mother`s Day or Father`s Day, so I don`t really pay attention to those dates; especially now that my family is separated. On Sunday morning I received a text message from my husband asking me whether I wanted to come to the playground where he was taking our daughter, and I got all excited to see my daughter thinking maybe for once my husband would want to spend extended period of time as a "family" together with her, so our daughter could see both parents at the same time, so I agreed to come. This week was my husband`s time with our daughter, so naturally I wanted to see her with every opportunity I got. The one question I forgot to ask him was about his plans regarding the length of time he was planning to spend at the playground with our daughter and what were his plans beyond that for a day.
As I started driving to the playground, I realized it was Sunday; I also remembered that his church service started at 11am, and the time was already after 9:30 am when I started driving. The doubts started creeping into my mind immediately questioning whether I should have agreed to come with the upcoming pending trial, or whether I should have refrained from this meeting. I gave it into God`s hands, and I prayed that if this was His will that we spent the time together, than it would be extended period of time.
As I got to the playground, my daughter was ecstatic to see me, and immediately she didn`t want anything to do with my husband because she only doesn`t mind to see him when I am around, and when she has to go with him rather than with me, she gets very upset and starts weeping trying to break away from him; it`s a heart retching thing to go through every time he has to pick her up, and on Sunday this is something I was afraid of would happen especially if it turned out for me to see her for only a short period of time. I put my doubts aside and trusted in the Lord to show me what would be the outcome.
As I started to play with my daughter, I asked my husband what was his plan for the time period at the playground and beyond that for a day. He answered exactly what I was afraid of to hear; he said that he was planning on leaving in about 20 minutes to go to the church, after that letting our daughter nap, and after that he was planning on taking her to another park by our house. With that, he congratulated me with Mother`s Day and offered whether I wanted to join them in the afternoon at the other park when he would take her there after her nap.
Everything dropped inside me as I knew that my daughter would be very upset to be taken away from me in about 20 minutes, but I also knew that I had no choice, so I played out as much as I could to lead my daughter to my husband`s car regardless of her weeping and refusing to go with him. As my husband forced our daughter into the car seat against her will and against her attempt to break free from him, I told him my concern about her reaction, and he snapped at me by saying that he would not call me again to invite me to come along on their walks.
I didn`t care about him treating me like a dog by throwing me a small bone to see my daughter just for a glimpse period of time, but I cared about her being so upset and with him not carrying to react to her being so heartbroken to be torn apart like that between the two parents.
As I walked away trying to control my tears, I started to pray. I was thanking the Lord for answering me with this clear message: "There is time for everything, and right now your time is to refrain from him and the "opportunity" to meet together.”
As I looked at Ecclesiastes 3, my heart stopped, but I knew better than that to be obedient to God. I only thanked Him for doing this work in my heart getting me to the point of seeking the reconciliation with my husband and being willing to move on with our family putting aside all the wrong we did to each other. As I`m facing the upcoming hearing, I know that God preserves His time for everything: there is time for embrace, and there is time to refrain from embrace, and my time is to refrain from embrace right now. There is time for war and there is time for peace, and my time is for war right now, but there will be time for peace soon.
It is amazing to me how clear God steers those who truly seek Him. It all boils down to one thing: do we seek His will our one`s own? I`ve tested it so many times that when I seek my own will, God doesn`t hinder me, but He allows that opportunity to explore and make mistakes (very costly mistakes mind you), but when I seek His will, He is more than eager to steer me into the right direction and provide the necessary guidance for particular situation, and He`s done it down to the meticulous details.
He promised in Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NIV):
11For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,“plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
This promise is amazing; our God is such gentlemen- He never imposes on us, but He always gives us a choice. If I seek Him with my whole heart, I will find Him; that means that I plunge into His arms completely; I am His. God`s plans are always for the better, and He confirmed it for us in both Testaments: Old and New promise the same thing: that God`s plans are only for the better to those who seek Him and love Him (Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28 aside from the other scriptures).
I know that God`s plan is to restore my family, but I have to know how to discern each season, so I could be obedient and productive for Him. I have to be able to tell "no, not now" regardless of how tempting it may seem to give in now. This is why my negotiations in the court never worked. Every time, I was faced with temptation to give in and compromise just to get what I want now, it didn`t work out; every time I had to find a way to say "no, not now" because I knew that was not the right. Every time my husband attempted to tie me legally by the court binding order to dictate me what to do, God disallowed him to do that; God`s hand was there for me every single time to preserve me and protect me not to fall into the hands of an enemy.
It`s very important that we learn to discern the right seasons because when we don`t, we make costly mistakes, and I made one again on Sunday when I agreed to come to the playground instead of asking prior to showing up at the place about the length of time my husband planned on spending there with our daughter and regarding my husband`s intentions for that day.
Are you making the right decisions and know how to discern the seasons to allow God enough room to do what He needs in your life? It`s important that we cooperate with God instead of becoming a hindrance, and we can do that only by seeking Him with one`s whole heart. I continue to seek His guidance, so He could direct my path and show me what to do at the upcoming court appointed mediation session because it`s no time for compromising right now. My season is to seek the Lord and wait, but I know there will come the day when it would be the time for peace, time for embrace, time for joy, time for dance, time for love, time for healing, time for building up. God is faithful to finish what He started!