A note from Kelly King: I can relate to Kaye’s article today in so many ways. I’m not a big fan of winter, and I’m not immune to feelings of winter when I don’t have community in my life or when I go through seasons of difficulties. Thankfully, God’s Word and His character are steadfast even in the midst of these times. If you are experiencing depression, please seek others to help you in your journey.
I was born in the midwest; Michigan to be exact. I love seasons. My favorite season is spring. Fall runs a close second, followed by summer, and yes, winter comes in dead last. There is a beauty to the snow to be sure, but the bitter cold and lack of sun wreaks havoc on me emotionally. I love that God created the earth with seasons in mind. He created us with seasons in mind as well. Our souls have seasons.
Take a moment and think about it right now. If you had to assign a season to the condition of your soul right now, what would it be? Not always, but quite often, people in a season of difficulty or pain are also experiencing a winter in the soul. What do we need to know about the soul’s winter and how to help ourselves and others through it?
Here are three reminders about winter and how to navigate it:
1. Winter is inevitable. Experiencing a winter of the soul is a “when” not an “if.” Trials, difficulties, pain, and impossible situations come to us all. Scripture underscores this and personal experience proves it. Are you experiencing a winter of your soul? If so, I am sorry for your pain.
2. When winter hits, don’t isolate. It will take every bit of courage and discipline to stay connected to others, but we must! Do you know the one people group with the lowest rate of depression? The Amish. Why? I’m sure there are many reasons, but topping the list is the fact that they live in community. No one isolates. Stay connected, ask for help, and receive help!
Are you in a small group community at your church? If not, find one. Plug in, serve others, and allow yourself to be served.
3. When winter hits, hold on to your anchor. Simply put, your anchor is Jesus! He promises His presence in every season, but there is a renewed desperation for Him in winter. Find Him in the Word, in prayer, and in personal worship. Hold on to His Hand, and don’t let go!
I’m writing about this today because we have recently moved to Florida. Here I am engulfed with the heat of summer and the beauty that is the West coast of Florida and my soul is experiencing winter. I know it is because we have transitioned as a family, leaving people and work we love for places and faces that are unfamiliar. Regardless of what brings it on, winter comes to us all from time to time. Let’s remember that, let’s lean in to others, and hold tightly to the Anchor that is Jesus Himself. “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure” (Hebrews 6:19a, NIV).
Kaye Hurta has a Masters Degree in counseling from Liberty University and is a crisis counselor for Women’s Events through LifeWay Christian Resources. Whether speaking, singing, or listening, Kaye’s passion is to help others find intimacy with Christ and soul transformation through the living pages of His Word. Kaye met and married her husband Chris in Austin, Texas in 1987. They have two daughters through the miracle of adoption, Madison and Cami. Kaye is also a contributing author for the LifeWay resource, Women Reaching Women in Crisis.