I’m sure you remember that we here on Earth have our seasons all because of the tilt of the earth.
Our tilt is not like that of Uranus which sits sideways. Nor is it like Jupiter, whose tilt is only 3 degrees. Our tilt, slant or “axial tilt” is 23.4 degrees and decreasing. It is usually between 22.1 and 24.5 degrees.
It is because of that tilt that our planet has it’s seasons. As the North pole tilts toward the sun we have summer in the Northern hemisphere. Conversely, when the South pole tilts toward the sun we have winter in the Northern hemisphere.
It’s amazing to me that at any one time, earth is going through two distinct seasons. One in the Northern hemisphere and one in the Southern hempsphere. Yet, we only are experiencing the one that we are in.
Also interesting to note is whichever hemisphere is pointed towards the sun receives more energy and light from the sun.
It is precisely that tilt that gives us our winter, spring, summer and fall. Three months each, with specific starting and ending dates makes earth’s seasons measured, predictable and purposeful.
Spring – seeds take root, things begin to grow, warmer weather, animals awake, melting snow and rain
Summer – temperatures increase to the hotest time of the year, heat waves and droughts
Fall – temperatures cool, plants grow dormant, animals prepare for cold storing food or traveling, harvests
Winter – brings chill, snow, ice, rain, animals seek warmth
Seasons are those periods of the year with disctinct conditions and day lengths but the timing and characteristics of seasons depend on where you are on earth.
One other note before I make some applications to your life. Earth’s axis rotation is changing. In fact, a complete cycle is 26,000 years. In 13,000 years earth’s seasons will actually reverse. It will take another 13,000 years for them to return back again. This change is gradual and we never notice it. But it does cause our summer solstice to arrive 20 minutes early every year. In 70 years, it will arrive a full day earlier.
Why the astronomy lesson? Why should I care?
One thing we know for sure is that as long as there is an earth, there will be seasons. Genesis 8:22 promises that. And I would add, as long as we are living, our life will go through seasons. (And I don’t just mean those 4 seasons each year.)
Each of us personally experience seasons in our life. If we don’t recognize what season we’re in we tend to feel lost and without purpose. So it is important for us to recognize the season that we are in.
Each season has a specific purpose, something that must be accomplished. Also, remember, “if we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant.” Anne Bradstreet
“Life is not one long race, but many short ones in succession.” And those short ones are the seasons of life that we all pass and grow through. Seasons help us plan and manage expectations. Seasons remind us that there is a time for everything. Ecclestiastes 3:1 It is frustrating though that the seasons of our life are not as clearly defined as our tilted, earthly seasons, isn’t it?
Most importantly, every season has a beginning and an end.
The season you are currently in is not permanent. The season you are in does have a purpose to accomplish in your life. The season you are in is exactly because of the tilt and lopsided orbit of your life. The season you are in is part of a much larger cycle with a much bigger purpose than you are now seeing. The season that you are in may be producing incremental changes for you but big and lasting changes for the generations that follow you. You may or may not see your seasonal change, but it is happening.
Lastly, the amount of light and energy that you experience in your seasons depends on what direction you are pointed. Are you pointed toward the Son? There is where you will find energy and light for your seasonal changes.
You may have times when you think that your life is off kilter, lopsided or having been hit by some enormous object that threw you off course. I imagine Mother Earth thought that 4.5 billion years ago when something crashed into her and caused her to tilt 23.4 degrees. But without her tilt, there would be no seasons. Without her tilt the only habitable place for humans would be the equator. So whatever has crashed into your life is part of a master plan, and it has a definate purpose.
It really is all about the tilt and seasons of your life.
Cheers to your growth through each season,
- Nasa Science Space Place – spaceplace.nasa.gov
- On Star Register – osr.org/blog/kids
- The Holy Bible