Good Evening all!
A Time for Everything
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3 1-8
‘Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.’
A quote from a film- can anyone name it?
Life does indeed move quickly- It hardly seems possible that we are heading towards the end of January already- I am often asked where does the time go!
There has been quite and amount said over the last few months about what a terrible year 2016 was because of the amount of famous or well-known people who died- If we think of some of the names on that list this year it is clear to see why people think 2016 was such a bad year- Many of the names which is very long are names and faces that we will all recognise and many of us will have memories of their music or parts played on TV or on the Big screen! As we have moved into 2017 however we have seen that the loss of famous people has continued and the advent of the new year has not changed the reality that life moves on quickly and it can be over in an instant.
The truth is that life moves- it moves quickly and it moves on! We cannot escape that in each of our lives there will be days when life gives and when life takes away- in this truth we can identify with the piece of scripture above that there are indeed seasons in each of our lives and that those seasons don’t last for ever!
When we consider how people have reacted to the loss of celebrities this year I always try and remember that however much we think we know someone famous we must remember that they have loved ones and families who know them…. Not just their public face- they are the ones who must truly feel the loss!!
When we think about those we have lost it can be very easy to dwell on their passing- I was chatting recently about my own Granddad who died ten years ago, at Christmas- Frank Jones is still missed by us all and his passing was a shock to us- his fun persona, his mischievous side and love for us are the things I remember as well as his completely useless sense of direction!
If we were to concentrate on just the death of Frank, then we could easily think that the past ten years have held nothing but the pain of loss in my life – but thankfully this couldn’t be further from the truth! The last ten years have not been defined by the loss of my granddad- there has been so much more- Natasha and I have just celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary (Yes, she has put up with me for that long!), we have been blessed with two beautiful daughters, as a family we have had numerous other new members of the family come along to bless us all, new friends, a new role in CPA, a new church and calling to serve!
Life moves on- life goes on! In each of our lives there will be days, weeks and seasons where we feel pain and loss- this is normal! But there will be days, weeks and seasons where we are overcome with joy and happiness- this is also normal!!
I would imagine there will be some reading this who are indeed in a season in their lives that is full of joy wonder and hope. There will also be those reading this who feel they are travelling through the storm, unsure of the future, mourning or in the midst of despair- to those of you in either season I want to tell you that whatever or where ever you are today you have a Father in Heaven who loves you dearly and who wants to bless you abundantly! There is a famous quote from Winston Churchill ‘If you’re going through hell, keep going’- Wise words indeed!
Through good or through bad we are called to Love- Love the Lord, Love one another, Love our neighbours and yes, our enemies……
In Romans 12 we read:
‘Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honour one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.’
Romans 12 9-16
So today, this week, this month if you are in a season of abundance or joy then share it about- Look around you and try to bring that Joy and abundance to those you see every day- Pray for your friends, practice hospitality, be humble, rejoice and morn with people! But if you are in the middle of the storm and feel like you are going through hell-Firstly Keep Going! Be hopeful, be patient, and faithful, seek the Lord and through prayer give it all to him- You will get through the storm- there is a season for everything and it won’t last forever- Life moves pretty fast!