Billie Silvey
The Seasons
of the SOUL
May 2007
"There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity
under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to
a time to weep and a time to
a time to mourn and a time to
--Ecclesiastes 3:1-3
Early in his career, the artist Paul
Cezanne painted four panels depicting
four seasons.  The figure of a woman
engaged in activities and decorated as
befits the season represents the periods
of a woman's life.  She also can stand for
the seasons of the soul.
Spring is lithe, youthful and free.  
Dancing with a garland of seasonal
flowers, she has all the freshness of a
well-watered garden, when prayers
come easily, and we feel as if we are
walking in perfect step with God's will.
Summer is a fruitful time of strength and
activity.  This woman is more mature and
serious, with her hair drawn back and her
energies applied to productive effort.  The
summer of life is an active time of
child-bearing, nurturing, career-development,
and homebuilding.

In the summer of the soul, we give our all to
God's work, feeling great energy and
Fall is a fruitful time of harvest, of growing
maturity, of enjoying family and friends and
reaping the rewards of a productive life.  It
is also a time to reach out and share our
fruit-- physical, spiritual and
experiential--with others.

It can be a time of spiritual discernment
and growing wisdom.
The winter of life is a quieter time of
contemplation and of a wiser use of waning
energies.  It can be a time of renewed
spiritual growth.

"Therefore we do not lose heart.  Though
outwardly we are wasting away, yet
inwardly we are being renewed day by
day.  For our light and momentary
troubles are achieving for us an eternal
glory that far outweighs them all.  So we
fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on
what is unseen.  For what is seen is
temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."
--2 Corinthians 4:16-18
I like the fact that the woman who represents winter is
looking off the page.  I'm in the winter of life, and I
don't know what's coming next.  But, based on my
experience of living through the first three, and trusting
God to guide my way, I'm looking forward to it.