Week Two – Day 5 – Ecclesiastes 3:1 – 8 SOAP v. 1
3 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
2 a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up 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 together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast 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 for war, and a time for peace.
O/A – Solomon gives a series of opposites that seemingly show that both the good and the bad are in our lives. Over the past year or so, I have begun to see life AS a series of seasons – in our physical lives, our spiritual lives, in the world that we live in…. all have times of lean or of plenty, times of darkness and times of light, times of joy and times of sorrow. Yes, FOR EVERYTHING there is a season – and it is finding the blessing in each season that we find true joy. God has a plan for us, a plan for each person, a plan for this world (Jeremiah 29:11) and He also has a purpose for each time and incident in our lives. We need to find Him in each of these seasons!
In my life, there have been these seasons…..
- A time of joy, and time of sorrow
- A time of marriage, and the time of divorce
- A time of childbirth, and the time of miscarriage
- A time of having a child, and the time of having her grow up and go on her own
- A time of being close to family, and the time of moving away
- A time of ease of life, and times of stress
- A time of spiritual growth and renewal, and times of spiritual deserts
- A time of plenty, and times of lean finances
- A time of having friends close by, and times of loneliness
- A time of rest and relaxation, and times of busy-ness
- A time of worship and praise, and times of crying out to Him
- A time of wonder, and times of questioning
I am thankful for all these times, as they have been used to make me into who I am – in Christ. Those difficult seasons were used to mold and shape me, and to draw me closer to God, crying out to Him. Would I want to NOT have had those times? Sometimes. But, in retrospect, I see how God has used them – and used me.
It is in realizing that God USES all these seasons to form and shape us, to refine us, to bring us closer to the image of Christ, to bring us unto Himself, to help us to see that we CANNOT do it on our own! I cannot, in my finite wisdom, even begin to understand God’s reasoning, but I can trust Him. I can trust His purposes for me.
“Since all has been determined by God, life has purpose and meaning. Since God has set a time for everything, a sense of security results. The continual movements of life do not need to be viewed as meaningless. “Instead of changelessness, there is something better: a dynamic, divine purpose, with its beginning and end. Instead of frozen perfection, there is the kaleidoscopic movements of innumerable processes, each with its own character and its period of blossoming and ripening; beautiful in its time and contributing to the over-all masterpiece which is the work of our Creator” (Kidner, 39). From this perspective, then, God’s actions are not simply arbitrary, but appropriate, and not simply confining, but releasing.” – Asbury Bible Commentary – Biblegateway.com
P – Father God, thank You for the seasons that You bring into my life. Just like I enjoy spring and the new life that I see all around me, I thank You for the times that You have brought new life and growth into my life. Thank you for those dry times that taught me to wait on You for Your refreshing. Father, those fall times of color, of bittersweet times, thank You for the appreciation that I get from changes and even the sense of gearing up for harder times. Thank You for the winters, the cold and hunkering down of time, and of slowing down to celebrate friends and family. Father, You have brought joy and challenge, sorrow and victory, love and laughter, and even pain into my life to teach me not only about myself, but of You. Continue working, and molding and shaping me into a woman who can better serve You.
To Everything There is a Season –(John Rutter) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Rh44ghQR3Y
For Everything There is a Season (video interpretation) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_671epv4K4