What season and time is it?

September 1, 2017

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
(Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NIV))

What time do you think that it is?

We are told there are many different times that God has planned for.

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 3:2-8 (NIV))

I realize that some of these are not very pleasant. I realize that we experience all of them to some extent in our individual lives. Collectively, we seem to experience them as well. With all that is going on in the world right now, it seems as though we experience many of these on a daily basis. I have often wondered if there was any particular reason for the order of these events in these verses. I have also wondered how I am expected to react in each of these pairings of events. Each element in each pairing is the polar opposite from the other element in the pairing. Is God telling us that we will experience every possible situation in our lives and this is how He explained it by giving us many extremes of the same thing?

Life is precious!

Sadly, due to the fall from grace, we will experience life’s extremes. We will see things that will give us unimaginable joy and the very next minute, we will see things that bring us unimaginable pain.

I love the outlook that a friend has about life. He says that “I have never had a bad day. I have had some bad things happen on a good day, but I have never had a bad day!” If you believe that life is precious, then I pray that you see the wisdom in these words the next time that you face some of life’s extremes.

Copyright 1998 – 2017 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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The world needs Jesus!

September 11, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals. And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it. I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.”
(Revelation 5:1-5 (NIV))

With all that is going on in the world, do you weep?

With recent events and with things that are pending, do you look at the lost of the world and weep?

My heart is heavy. I stand firm in the promises that the Body of Christ has been given, yet I weep. I am in anguish for the lost. I am in anguish for the hard hearted. I weep for those who don’t realize that they are in need of a savior.

The passage above tells us that we are not to weep, for Jesus, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, has triumphed. For this I am eternally grateful. I do not weep because we have no hope. We have the blessed assurance that Jesus has won. I weep for the lost. I can’t help but wonder when Jesus will return and how many of the lost will He weep for.

Things are getting more interesting every day. Chinese and Russian warships in U.S. territorial waters off of Alaska and Georgia. Islamic refugees flooding Europe. The Iran situation. ISIS is expanding. The anniversary of September 11 and everyone on high alert. The blood moons. The worldwide financial crises.

The world needs Jesus!

Unfortunately, far too many will reject Him and will suffer the consequences.

I don’t know what the future will bring, but I do know who holds the future. I place my faith, hope and trust completely in Jesus, the only begotten Son of God.

And, for those who choose to not do the same, I weep.

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Time under heaven

January 28, 2013

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
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,
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 (NIV))

Have you ever thought about how you would know what time was called for?

Some are obvious. Birth and death and many others, but most are difficult to determine, especially if we follow the command to love one another.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
(John 13:34-35 (NIV))

How do we balance this command with the words from Ecclesiastes? How do we treat the world and those who flaunt their sin at our faith? I know that everyone is familiar with the story of the prodigal son. This implies that God is patient with us and wishes for us to return. We are to show the same patience with those who flaunt their sin, yet we are also told of what will happen if they do not repent.

If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town. I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.
(Matthew 10:14-15 (NIV))

How do we respond to those who claim that Jesus is love and yet they still continue in their sin?

How do we, who are called to do as Jesus did, respond when we are told that everything has its time under heaven? Will there be a day when we, as the Body of Christ, are called to hate? Will we be called to kill? Will we be called to turn away when in our hearts we know that we are to love? Will there come a point in time when we can no longer associate with sin because we are called to be with Jesus?

I have come to the conclusion that in order to know the time, we must know Jesus. In order to know Jesus, we must seek Him in all that we do. We cannot follow Jesus while we watch sports or our favorite television show. We follow Jesus by embracing Him in all aspects of our lives. Only then will we be able to begin to understand the time under heaven.

Copyright 1998 – 2013 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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Seasons

June 13, 2012

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance
(Ecclesiastes 3:4 (NIV))

Isn’t it amazing how we are told that everything has it’s season? This seems to go hand in hand with the way that God has planned for us to live. It is as if He has certain things that He wants for us to experience in our lives in order to build up a certain characteristic of our personalities. Each characteristic builds upon another, and so, everything seems to have it’s season.

With this in mind, the next time that you find yourself in a situation where you are questioning why you are going through an extremely tough experience, remember that it is only for a time and that it will pass. You will find yourself on the other end of this experience with stronger faith and character than before it all began.

We must also remember that we are only here for a short time and that we have much to learn. Perhaps the biggest lesson that we must learn is that we are sinners and have fallen short of the glory of God. When we come to this realization, then it is time to accept the grace and mercy that is freely given to us through the blood of Jesus. He, too, had His times to laugh and to weep so that we may have the opportunity to have eternal time with God the Father.

What have your times been like?

Copyright 1998 – 2012 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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