Reading: Ecclesiastes 3 verses 1 – 11
Thought: Do you ever feel impatient? I know I do. You’ve been waiting for something to happen or someone or something to arrive and it just seems that time has all but stopped. You wish you could have control over the clock and make it go at the time you want it to, or fast forward through the calendar to reach the date you’re desperate to get to – but you can’t!
We don’t have the power to change dates and times and, much as we might want to, imagine the utter chaos it would cause if we did… one day you’re finishing your summer holidays in preparation for a new school year and, the next … zoom… it’s Christmas eve. Sounds great, but what about all the learning you’ve missed out on in school between times? Or the new friends you might have made? The fun things you could just missed out on along the way as you fast-forwarded through time. Waiting rarely seems like any fun but, in many ways, it can actually be very important!
In the Old Testament, prophets told how Jesus would be born, how He would change the world and change lives too yet, none of the people in the Old Testament ever got to meet Him. Why? Because the time wasn’t right. God needed the right people, with the right hearts, in the right place, at the right time for His plan to happen. In Ecclesiastes 3, we are reminded: ‘To everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven.’ All we can know for definite is what is happening now or what has happened. We cannot know the future, because we are human and don’t have that power. But, God, who is all-powerful, all-knowing knows exactly what should happen and when it should happen because, unlike us, He sees everything from an eternal viewpoint, while we only see a tiny snap-shot of time.
I’m sure there were many times when the people wondered if the prophets’ words would come true, but God knew exactly when they would – and did – come true, and that was only when the timing was exactly right.
We didn’t paint our salt-dough ornaments last night because they needed to bake and cool. Much as we would have like to, if we had, the paint would probably have run and made a mess and we may even have got burnt. While being impatient could have made us rush on, being patient and waiting till the right time made much more sense.
If you feel that God is making you wait, that He isn’t doing things in the way or time that you want Him to, think about those who waited for Jesus to come. God made the promise and His word came true, but only when the time was right. Never forget God’s faithfulness or His promises; you might feel now that you’re having to wait longer than you want to, but, rest assured, God is faithful. He will keep His promises and you will know His ‘perfect’ plan for you, when the time is just right.
Carol of the Day: O Holy Night
Advent Activity: Paint the salt dough ornaments and, when dry, thread through with chosen thread/string etc., ready for hanging up.
Materials Needed: Baked salt dough from yesterday; string/thread/ something to hang them with; paind & brushes. (Lots of wipes for cleaning up … and, quite possibly, a lot of patience too!)