“And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath. For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.”
-The events of the great tribulation will be preferred at any other time other than winter & sabbath but Christ will shorten these days for the salvation of His children. In the same chapter, Jesus reveals that the fig tree will give us a sign of the end times, when it becomes tender & puts forth leaves that summer will be near (Mat 24:32). He also reveals that despite these events happening during summer or winter no one knows the day nor the hour but only the Father. Jesus encourages us to stay alert in obedience; holding onto grace through the help of the Holy Spirit so that we may endure to the end & partake of eternal life with Him.
-Winter in Hebrew is written as choreph which is the coldest of the four seasons which is characterised by plenty of rainfall or snow. During this time some animals hibernate to keep warm & others migrate in search for pasture & people sow seed in expectation for a harvest. We know that God is the author of all seasons, seedtime & harvest time, cold & heat, winter & summer (Gen 8:22). Winter is often associated with cold & seedtime, & sometimes a challenging period of our live but we remain optimistic that once we plant good seeds of love, kindness, goodness, integrity, hard-work etc; we will reap desirable fruits. Instead of planting during winter, a sluggard in laziness lays in waiting for others to plant during winter by reason of cold & begs in harvest but has no gain (Pro 20:4). He does not plan his affairs properly nor invest his time & money wisely like others which hinders him from achieving his/her objectives & most often unable to cater for his basic needs. A virtuous woman on the other hand is not afraid of snow & clothes her household with scarlet (Pr 31:21). We are therefore called to plant physical & spiritual seeds during winter & through Gods’ merciful love we will surely harvest, some 30 fold, some 60 fold & others 100 fold. During winter, king Jehoiakim of Judah was resting in the winter house, a separate portion of the palace which had a fire on the hearth to keep him warm & cushion him again diseases associated with cold (Jer 36:22) when Jeremiah & Baruch visited him. They revealed Gods’ word to him but he did not heed to it & destroyed the scroll by burning it on the hearth & imprisoned Jeremiah. God was merciful to Jeremiah & delivered him from the dungeon when the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem. Apostle Paul was also thrown into the dungeon by the Romans & requested Timothy to visit him before winter. It was a time Paul was faced by difficulties but still had faith in God & hope of being delivered from all evil works (2 Tim 4:18-21 ). He was also faced by the sad reality that death is inevitable having finished his work, but held on to the grace of God which yields our salvation, in the hope of being preserved for the heavenly kingdom; thus giving all the glory to God. Sometimes are faced by the same realities of winter in our relationships, marriages, finances, work, businesses, health & many other challenges that affect our well-being. We are reminded that after the winter season has passed & rain is gone, flowers blossom & turtledoves rejoice in the land (Song of Sol 2:11-12). We therefore have hope of a better life in the near future & are encouraged to hold onto Christ the author & finisher of our faith, Who gives us life & strength to push on through His everlasting grace.
We pour out our hearts to You Lord our Savior & pillar of strengthen, have mercy on us Father, cleanse us from all unrighteousness & write our names in the book of life. We humbly ask You to give us the grace to keep pressing on in all we do Holy Spirit; that we may achieve that which You have prepared for us here on earth & in heaven when Christ comes back. Answer all our prayer Jehovah that we may live according to Your will Almighty Father. Have mercy on all those who do not know You Lord & strengthen them in Your salvation. We put all our trust in You Father, direct us, our families & leaders especially in times of difficulties that we may emerge victorious in all things for the glory of Your name. Amen
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