Season's Change 4
by Janice S Ramkissoon
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“A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away”(v5). “A time to search and a time to lose, a time to keep and a time to throw away.”(v6).
Relating the conversion process that takes place with regards to removing the clutter of the old nature and making way for the Holy Spirit to refill us with the fruit of the Spirit, in order for our behaviour to be Christ-like.
When I read this verse, I thought about ‘spring cleaning’. Going through the wardrobe and gathering all the clothes I’ve been holding onto/ embracing, which are of no use to me. The pre-maternity clothes still the size I once was and the maternity clothes still a size too big are currently taking up valuable space that could be used by other clothes that fit but are currently stored in suitcases.
Likewise, the habits we have that no longer fit our new nature must go. While these old clothing of mine are hanging there, it may seem like I have sufficient clothing when in fact there are only a few outfits that can be worn. It also clouds my vision, causing me not to see where my clothing needs lie. Each time I open the wardrobe, there are plenty outfits in view so as far as I’m concerned, I’m blessed for I have much, when in fact I am looking at quantity and not quality.
If I should remove the pre-maternity and maternity clothing, I would be removing what I no longer require. I have increased in size and therefore I need appropriate clothing for the new me. Once these clothing are removed, there will be room to accommodate the new clothes.
Likewise, in the spiritual realm – removing the old behaviour, that which is not Christ-like, will make room for Christ-like behaviours to develop in us. So I relate this verse (5) to that of verse 6, which lets us know that there is a time to search and a time to throw away. We can look at this in various ways such as:
Searching for meaning in life: This could find us changing religious beliefs/practices, lifestyle, diets etc. but once we find Jesus Christ and decide to follow Him; believing that He died for our sins; confessing with our mouth and believing in our hearts that He is the Saviour of the world, then we would need to throw away previous religious beliefs etc. and embrace the teachings of Christ.
- Looking at this from a business perspective: starting up in business, one does research and comes up with various, viable options. From this research, one narrows down the business idea to one option. The rules and regulations differ from one business form to another, so once the option is chosen its time to throw/void all other options and their regulations to avoid confusion.
Failing to remove what is no longer useful (throw away or give away), a mismatch will take place. For example using a dress I have outgrown with a new jacket would not ‘sit right’. The dress would be uncomfortable and be faded so the jacket would not compliment it. This is like the contamination that occurs by pouring new wine into an old wine bottle. Once you find God you will want to throw off all that contradicts the teaching of the Bible.
Prior to finding Christ, the individual was a vessel for the enemy and so their old nature is to do wrong. They therefore come to Christ equipped with all the tools of wrong-doing, such as outlined in Galatians 5:19-21. Having found Christ the individual needs rehabilitation in order to return those tools to its rightful owner and make space for the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) to develop in them; equipping them with the tools they need to work for Christ.
© 2008 J. S. Ramkissoon
Season's Change continues under the Leadership theme and is an analysis of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8. This is in relation to the spiritual growth of a believer. Some of these areas, though vital to a believer's growth, are often marginalised or ignored. This action then contributes to the spiritual death of many believers and the de-motivation of our leaders.
Verse one gives an overall picture of bringing us to the knowledge that there is a designated time for everything. "There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under the heaven." This flows through the series and shows the importance of each activity on our journey as believers.
This series developed, from the article ‘My Beloved Child’, as a leadership tool to help the church towards growth. Though the articles are targeted at leaders, they are written in a simple form so that any believer reading the articles can find tips within, to help towards spiritual growth.
To read the other parts of this article you can visit: http://www.write2shine.com/Season_s_Change.html
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Wonderful exposition! Thanks so very much, may God continue to bless your wisdom and availability to serve.