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  • Writer's pictureThe Rev. Ian Emile Dunn

He makes everything beautiful in its time

When I was a young clergyman, I had a man in my congregation who wanted to become a deacon. He planned to preach one weekend, so I met him for dinner. As we reviewed his sermon, he finished with the statement, "Do the gospel."

I asked him, "What do you mean by this?"

He responded, "Well, do the gospel!"

I realized I had used this phrase in my sermons without ever bothering to define what I meant by the gospel or what it meant to live in it! That day, I learned that I should strive to be clear and well-defined. I also want to be sure that I always point to Christ.

I tell this story because about two-thirds of the way through yesterday's sermon, I realized that what was vividly clear in my head was not vividly clear in my sermon.

Whether we are talking about healing from sin and brokenness or making everything beautiful in its time, Christ is the method for bringing forgiveness, healing, and beauty. While I think the sermon still glorified God, I want to be incredibly clear about how God brings about the promises of Ecclesiastes, especially the promise to make everything beautiful in its time.

In Chapter 3, we enter into the preacher's meditation on time. It is easy to read the first 8 verses as being fatalistic or misread it as a challenge to overcome hardness by sheer willpower.

The preacher doesn't allow for this reading, but forces us to come to grips with the reality that God is sovereign over time. Not only that, but the eternal promise we have in Christ is that at his return - he will renew all things and make all things beautiful.

This is our reason for hope. To learn more, listen to this week's sermon. If you'd like to know more, please let me know.

RefectionReflection questions:

  1. What is your relationship with time? Do you try and control it, does it control you or do you give glory to the author of time?,

  2. How does God, being the author of time, give you hope?

  3. What would it mean to have all things made beautiful?

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