A Time for Everything Ecclesiastes 3: 1-14
3 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
9 What do workers gain from their toil? 10 I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet[a] no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. 13 That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. 14 I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it.
In my study of “Looking for Lovely” by Annie Downs, we are learning about farmers. Farmers may rest, but they never quit. They are planning for the next season and celebrating the season that has passed. (pg. 40)
Yesterday, I shared the word freedom as a spiritual value I’m seeking. Here is how I would define my seeking:
“I want to have a farmer’s heart when it comes to how I face the trials in my life, the seasons of waiting, and the harder than I realized times. I want to find purpose and joy in the sowing seasons. I want to find the same amount of purpose in a could winter struggle….when I can find gratefulness in both the struggle and in the reward. I’ve prayed for a heart that waits well, works hard, and preservers, happily walking through the doors God opens for me.” (pg. 41)
Finish the season strong and prepare for the next one. (pg.41) Some doors that God opens are not always ones we want to walk through. How do we prepare? How do we accept the next season?
16 That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our inner strength in the Lord is growing every day. 17 These troubles and sufferings of ours are, after all, quite small and won’t last very long. Yet this short time of distress will result in God’s richest blessing upon us forever and ever! 18 So we do not look at what we can see right now, the troubles all around us, but we look forward to the joys in heaven which we have not yet seen. The troubles will soon be over, but the joys to come will last forever. 2 Corinthians 4:16 -18
One version of the passage asks us to “fix our eyes on Jesus” not our troubles. How do we see the activity through the eyes of faith, trust, and an awareness of His guiding hand?
She closes with 1 Corinthians 3:7 that reminds us that it is God who makes things grow.
Only God can give us the persevering heart and grow in us the things we need.
There is a purpose to every activity under heaven. Lord, give us the freedom to live in each activity knowing that you love us, and you will show us the way through suffering to perseverance, to character, and then to our eternal hope. (Romans 5:3-4)
No Longer Slaves
Jonathan and Melissa Helser