Sunday, November 25, 2012

Nov 25: Ecclesiastes 3

Today's reading in our daily plan is Ecclesiastes 3. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • This chapter starts out with some wise words that sound a lot like a song by The Byrds (Turn, Turn, Turn).
  • Then the author questions if there is any real meaning to our work. He even questions God because humans naturally are curious about the future but have no idea what God is doing a lot of the time. You can feel the frustration in the heart of the author as he searches for meaning in life.
  • Then he says our lives and our work are a gift from God.
  • The author also touches on the idea of all the injustice in the world. Many people have a hard time with the idea that God would allow injustice and pain in the world.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • The opening words of this chapter really were the inspiration for the writer (Pete Seeger) as he wrote the song I referred to. The truth is though, we’d be wise to seriously think through the implications of what the author is saying. There is a time for everything. 
  • God wants the best for us and he wants us to enjoy the tasks we put our hands to. It really is a gift just to have the ability to work. We should remember that in our times of frustration with our jobs. However, with this in mind, we should get our true joy from being in a relationship with a God who loves us.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • Our lives should have a sort of ebb and flow to them but often for most of us, our lives are just out of control. Can you relate to a schedule out of control? I know I’m guilty of that. In this chapter, the author says in the chaos of life we should be happy and enjoy ourselves and our work because both our life and work are from God. Have you ever thought of your work as a gift from God? Do you enjoy your work? Would you maybe enjoy it more if you looked at it as being a gift instead of a burden?