What I'm Learning in Ecclesiastes - Part Four

This is probably the last post I'm going to make on Ecclesiastes in this series unless something really jumps out at me in the next few weeks. We just wrapped up chapter 2 and got into chapter 3 and, of course, had to mention the Byrds and Turn! Turn! Turn! There is a time for x contrasted with a time for y. That seems to be the formula for the first several verses of Ecclesiastes 3. This is what I learned from it:

4) God will often use one season to prepare you for the next.

This isn't implicit in the text, but it's something I'm confident of as I grow in age and in faith. For example, there is a time for mourning and God will teach you and comfort you so that the time for rejoicing will be incredibly sweet.

For instance, in filling in the details for the statement that there is a season and a time for everything, Ecclesiastes 3:2 says that there is "a time to be born and a time to die". Last week, I officiated a funeral for a man that I respected a great deal. This season of death and mourning for the family and the community has been, I believe, tempered by the season of preparation given to him through birth. He was an amazing fellow who not only lived fully but also experienced the new birth (John 3:3). The psalmist writes "Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints." (Psalm 116:15). It's precious to us as well, no matter how hard it is to say good-bye, because of the life well-lived through a deep belief and faithfulness to Christ Jesus.

I don't want to go all crazy hermeneutical guy, but I've also been thinking about v. 5b which says, "a time to seek and a time to lose." Two of my Scripture memory verses are Matthew 6:33, "But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." and Luke 9:23 "And he said to all, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me." Going one verse further in Luke gets you, "For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it." I've been reflecting on what it means to seek God's kingdom and his righteousness and how that leads me into losing my life for Jesus' sake. One has been leading me to the other and there is not only a time for both, but also a time in which they exist together in my heart.

I'm still waiting for that season by the grace of God.