Questions of Time
Day: 51 | Plan: Suffering and Sovereignty
Today’s Reading: Ecclesiastes 3
Ecclesiastes 3:11 (NIV) “He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”
A common thread runs between you and me despite circumstances, life situations or daily demands. And no one escapes it.
It’s the question of time.
What if tomorrow doesn’t come? What if today isn’t enough? How much longer will this season go on? Perhaps we wish for more time or for time to slow down. Some want time to hurry up in order to get to the next destination of life.
Sometimes we struggle with embracing the here and now because what’s ahead feels more exciting. And then we arrive “there” and look back on “then,” wishing it hadn’t passed so quickly.
But maybe the reason we are so unsettled with time is because it’s actually how God created us. Ecclesiastes 3:11 tells us that He has set eternity in our hearts.
An unsettled heart can reflect our acceptance and hope that there is more. But we can also feel unsettled if we try to resist the eternal part of us. All of us, from time to time, live as if this life and its temporary joy and happiness is all there is.
But as followers of Jesus and children of God, there is so much promised to us beyond this moment. And maybe one of the reasons we feel such discontent is because inside all of us is the sense that this life isn’t all there is. This life is really just the warm-up for what’s next.
The real question of Ecclesiastes 3 and of time is this: How do you view eternity?
Is it a scary perspective or are you filled with a holy anticipation of what’s to come? Is it something you can’t even wrap your mind around? Or is it something you’re not even thinking about because you’re running too fast?
No matter what our current view of eternity is, all of us can pause today and be challenged by King Solomon’s wise lessons on time in this chapter. There are three main lessons:
1. Know the season you’re in and embrace change. (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8)
If God puts eternity in our hearts, He is the accountant for every second, minute, hour, day, month and year of our lives. One of the lessons of Ecclesiastes is to live in whatever season God has appointed to us with confidence and purpose.
2. Hold each moment carefully, trusting God with it. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)
When we approach every time and season in our lives as appointed by God, we are ever mindful that if He purposed it, He can be trusted in it.
3. We will all stand before God and be held accountable for what we did or didn’t do. (Ecclesiastes 3:22)
Finally, because God has a purpose for each moment of our lives, then we are expected to pursue and steward our seasons of time well. Time is a gift and what we do with it a solemn responsibility. God expects us to care well for every gift He gives, especially the moments entrusted to us.
Truly, time is a wise counselor – consulting with us daily to remind us that though the days feel long, the years are short. And that each day matters. But what’s coming in eternity matters most.
Prayer: God, help me to know who to be, where to be and what to be in the season I’m in. Give me the grace to not run from season to season so busy and missing what’s the most important. Help me have a holy anticipation about the future so that I live each day like it matters. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Ecclesiastes 3 is one of the most famous texts in all of Scripture. Poems, songs, books and sermons... Read More
Download the First 5 app to get the full experience