It’s a busy time of year. And although it’s busy, we still have our daily routines and commitments we must also follow through with. We add more and more to our to-do lists. Joy and peace are the gifts highlighted during this season, but it’s our joy and peace that seem to be targeted. Why is that?
I can tell you why, because it’s actually a very simple answer. Satan. If you’re celebrating Christmas for what it is, then you’re celebrating the promised birth of our savior, our redeemer, and Lord, Jesus Christ. And who does Satan hate? Yes, you are correct. And he keeps us busy with thoughts and things, and everything opposite of the gift of peace and joy; 2 of the gifts Jesus brought with Him.
On my knees this morning, I asked God to give me some clarity in a few things I’ve been struggling with. My word for 2018 is listen, but like many things in my life, I’m having to learn how. It’s not easy for me. Even in quiet, I fail. Listening isn’t just about focusing on what is being heard, but focusing on the heart. I can hear my clock ticking, the kids fans going in their rooms, and the roosters in our neighbors yard. I can hear my stomach gurgling my coffee. I can hear myself swallow and a few cracking noises in the house from time to time. I can hear my heart beat. So why can’t I hear God? I’m waiting for that “whisper” and waiting for anything that could possibly be from Him, but nothing.
I decided to finish out my prayer and read a few verses in my bible before jumping into my day. It’s going to be sad day for many. I’m attending the funeral of a young man that has inspired me, only because through his earthly death, I’ve learned who he was. A talented young man, that loves Jesus, and who’s life has ended way too early. I don’t understand, yet it’s not for me to. So I lean on my faith that God is using this for His good. That He will comfort all who will miss him, and who love him. And that is good enough for me.
So, I decided to read Ecclesiastes. I turned randomly to whatever page it fell on. And here are some of the verses I read. I’ll let you decide if I heard God speak.
Ecc 1:1-10. (HCSB)
The words of the Teacher, son of David, king of Jerusalem.
“Absolute futility,” says the Teacher. “Absolute futility. Everything is futile.” What does a man gain for all his efforts that he labors at under the sun? A generation goes and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises and the sun sets; panting, it returns to its place where it rises. Gusting to the south, turning to the north, turning, turning, goes the wind, and the wind returns in its cycles. All the streams flow to the sea, yet the sea is never full. The streams are flowing to the place, and they flow there again. All things are wearisome; man is unable to speak. The eye is not satisfied by seeing or the ear filling with hearing. What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done; there is nothing new under the sun. Can one say about anything, “Look, this is new”? It has already existed in the ages before us.
Thank you, Father. I hear You.