Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 says To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: 2 A 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.
I could always add a few to this list, not that I would cause that’s a pretty dangerous place to be (adding to the Superior Word of God). But if I could it might read a little like this ……
In everything, there is a season. A time to eat chocolate, and a time to eat more chocolate; a time to do housework, and a time to not. A time to look fabulous, and a time for a pj day; A time to dance like no one is watching, and a time to spend on your knees.
But I do love this passage of scripture, if you read it a few times it really covers most, if not all, areas of life.
By the end of the year that was 2004 I had no idea that I was entering into a whole lot of verse 6 …… a time to gain, a time to lose, a time to keep and a time to throw away …..
Noah was 2 years old. I remember clearly thinking “ok! He’s 2, he wasn’t supposed to make it to see his 1st birthday, but he made it to 2” That line of thinking was never joyful, it was more clinical, like checking something important off a list! I know that that is how I coped. I didn’t have an emotional bond with my son, our relationship was purely clinical …… sounds so awful, but it was the truth!
So 2005 began with Miss H at 4 years old, Mr E at 2 years 9 months and Mr Noah at just 2 years old. My hands …. still very full, My soul ….. still very tired, My heart ….. just about broken.
The beginning of a new year for most of us is an Expectant time, a time of Hope, a time of Re-organisation, a time of Change, a time of New Beginnings.
In February 2005 I had a routine appointment with Noah’s Paediatrician. It wasn’t a long appointment, as was the usual, his advice to me was this, “if you can move further north, Queensland if possible, it would give Noah a better chance of living. I’m happy to refer you to a paediatrician in Brisbane if you can get there as soon as possible.” This came as a shock to us as parents so plans were made for me to move north with the three children before the air turned cold and on the 1st April 2005 I started the 12 hour journey to my Mumma’s home in Queensland. The other part of the plan was for him (my then husband) to stay, as we had our own business, and either try and sell it or move it to Queensland in 6 weeks.
Arriving at my Mumma’s home and settling everyone into a new house came with its challenges, as it does for us all, but thankfully Miss H and Mr E were blessed with great personalities, were easy going and best of all they were awesome sleepers.
Here comes the ‘verse 6’ part ‘a time to gain, a time to lose; a time to keep, a time to throw away.’
To do that I need to side-step to address the significant ‘elephant in the room’. Soon after bringing Noah home from hospital I heard a very scary statistic, that 80% of marriages, where there is a baby born with a disability, end in divorce. 80%! 80%! And I remember saying a quick ‘that’s not going to be us’ to myself, but unfortunately our marriage was already very unhealthy. So to say that Noah’s entry into our family put more pressure and stress between us, is a complete understatement. Before Noah was born we were not communicating, we were both abusive to each other and worse than that neither of us were going to God with our lives. Were we going to church every sunday, yes! But were we living our lives for God, no! So Noah’s arrival just pushed us further apart until June 2005 when he decided that he was not joining us in Queensland and left our family. And in the hope that one day he or his family will read this blog I want to say that it takes THREE, a man and a woman and their GOD, to MAKE a marriage work. Thus my marriage ended only 5 years after it began.
It was a time for me to lose (verse 6).
Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months and I leaned more and more into God, and His plans for us, Miss H, Mr E, Mr N and myself. And He (God) has been faithful every step of the way!
God sees all things, nothing surprises Him.