Season of Preparation
Series: Don’t Die In The Winter
Week: January 27 – February 2, 2021
Aim: Since we know that winter is coming in our spiritual life as well as in our secular life, we need to prepare ourselves for the coming of winter. After studying this lesson, this series, students will know that a “spiritual” winter comes in every Christians’ life and will prepare themselves for the coming winter. They will not die in the winter for they know that spring is coming!
It is a good thing to recognize your season and prepare for it before it comes. In the natural, when we know that winter is about to come, we prepare ourselves by making sure that the furnace is checked and cleaned; we have warm clothing to wear; the windows and doors are properly insulated, and the car winterized. We want to be fully prepared to handle anything that bad weather might bring.
We also need to prepare for our spiritual winter since we know that it is coming! As human beings, we think we need to know what comes next. We know seasons come and seasons go! God does not always make us privy to such information as what will come in those seasons. When was the last time God asked you what you wanted. . .?? I didn’t think so! However, He has promised that if we walk upright, He will not withhold any good thing from us.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. Psalm 84:11 (ESV)
Therefore, we must conclude that if God withholds a certain thing that we have been praying for, and He does not bring it forth, then it is no longer working for our good. In other words, there are some blessings that God cannot give us because it is not the right season for that specific blessing.
How can we prepare for our spiritual winter? Let’s look at some things we should do to prepare for the coming of winter. Because winter is coming!! The weather in our spiritual world does not always correspond with the weather in our secular world. A spiritual winter may come in the summer secular world.
Matthew 6:31-34 (KJV) – 31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
I. Capitulate (Let go, let God)
2 Corinthians 12:9 (KJ21) – And He said unto me, “My grace is sufficient for thee, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Most gladly therefore will I glory rather in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Matthew 14:12 (KJV) – And his disciples came, and took up the body, and buried it, and went and told Jesus.
II. Communicate (Tell Jesus)
Ephesians 6:18 (NIV) – And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
Luke 18:1 (NIV) – Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up Mathew 26:41 (NIV)– “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Luke 24:13-16 (NIV) – 13 Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 16 but they were kept from recognizing him.
III. Commune (Talk with one another)
Malachi 3:16 (NKJV) – Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, And the LORD listened and heard them; So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those who fear the LORD And who meditate on His name.
Acts 2:42 (NLT) All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.
I John 1:7 (NKJV) But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Psalm 105:5 (NIV)
5 Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced,
Psalm 20:7 (KJV) – Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
IV. Commemorate (Think of His goodness to you)
- In the Night Season
Psalm 63:6 (GWT) As I lie on my bed, I remember you. Through the long hours of the night, I think about you.
- In Early Life
Ecclesiates 12:1 (GWT) Remember your Creator when you are young, before the days of trouble come and the years catch up with you. They will make you say, “I have found no pleasure in them.”
- In Time of Trouble
Jonah 2:7 (GWT) “As my life was slipping away, I remembered the Lord. My prayer came to you in your holy temple.”
Psalm 34:1 (NKJV) I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
Psalm 67:3 (KJV) Let the people praise thee, O God; let all the people praise thee.
V. Celebrate (Praise Him, rejoice)
Praise is. . .
Praise Him. . .
In Song: Sing praises to the LORD, who dwells in Zion! Declare His deeds among the people. Psalm 9:11 (NKJV) With Musical Instruments: Praise the LORD with the harp; Make melody to Him with an instrument of ten strings. Psalm 33:2 (NKJV)
Fourfold Reason to Praise Him. . .
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; I Peter 2:9 (NKJV)
Now you are ready to face your spiritual winter!!!
God’s Weather Channel
Tuning in to Divine Guidance
God’s Word provides food for thought and sustenance for living. Knowing the Word gives us guidance through the seasons of life. Every verse offers spiritual insight to the one who prayerfully searches and uncovers truths, truths that bring comfort and understanding during a season of adversity.
Just as we prepare ourselves for seasonal changes in the natural, we must also clothe ourselves in the righteousness of God’s Word during seasonal changes. So commit such passages to memory. These truths will bless you in your season, even as they have helped others. Be encouraged as you tune in to God’s divine weather channel.
Neither give place to the devil (Ephesians 4:27)
This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118:24)
Showers of Blessings
“ . . .If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it. 11 “ And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground, Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,” Says the LORD of hosts; (Malachi 3:10-11)
And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the LORD your God:. . . And the LORD will make you the head and not the tail; you shall be above only, and not be beneath, if you heed the commandments of the LORD your God, which I command you today, and are careful to observe them. (Deuteronomy 28:2, 13)
“For from the rising of the sun, even to its going down, My name shall be great. . .” (Malachi 1:11)
The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, And He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the LORD upholds him with His hand. (Psalm 37:23-24)
Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes, And I shall keep it to the end. Give me understanding, and I shall keep Your law; Indeed, I shall observe it with my whole heart. (Psalm 119:33-34)
We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)
For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. In this you have done foolishly; therefore from now on you shall have wars.” (2 Chronicles 16:9)
Highs and Lows
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. (I Corinthians 15:58)
For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; In the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock. And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the LORD. (Psalm 27:5-6)
When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him (Isaiah 59:19b)
I will lift up my eyes to the hills— From whence comes my help? My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth. (Psalm 121:1-2)
Wind Chill Factor
Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning. (Psalm 30:5b)
Don’t die in the winter. . .
PRAYER PRINCIPLE: Praise God for the ability to take everything to God in prayer.
SOCIAL JUSTICE PRINCIPLE: Let others know how relinquishing control can provide relief.
EVANGELISM PRINCIPLE: Share how Christ is our constant example of obedience and sacrifice for all.
STEWARDSHIP PRINCIPLE: Our giving helps others learn the values associated with a season of distress and grief.
DISCIPLESHIP PRINCIPLE: No matter what comes your way, remain prayerful; no matter what did not come your way, be thankful; no matter how things didn’t go your way, be content!
NEXT WEEK’S TITLE: Trusting God When You Don’t Understand
SERIES: Why? (Why Does God Allow Suffering?)
NEXT WEEK’S READING ASSIGNMENT: John 12:24; Philippians 3:8; Philippians 1:21; Romans 14:9; Galatians 2:20; 1 Thessalonians 5:10; Jeremiah 18:2-6; Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 40:5; Isaiah 43:13; Psalm 66:9; Habakkuk 3:4; Job 42:2; Psalm 115:3; John 10:29-30; Psalm 89:13; Jeremiah 31:3; 1 John 3:1; John 3:16; 1 John 4:9-10; Psalm 98:1; Isaiah 59:1; 1 Peter 5:6; Psalm 37:23-24; Genesis 3:1-15; 1 John 2:16; 2 Corinthians 4:7-10, 17