Many people have heard the song “Turn, Turn, Turn.” It was written by Pete Seeger and recorded by The Byrds in the ’60’s. Many people know the song, but I wonder how many people realize it is taken from Scripture? Ecclesiastes 3:1 tells us, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Have you ever said to yourself “there just aren’t enough hours in the day?” That is a statement that I utter to myself fairly often, but Ecclesiastes shows us that that is not technically true. God has given us enough hours in a day to get accomplished what He desires us to accomplish. Therefore one thing we need to do is to check our schedule and examine our priorities. Are we engaging in activities that God does not want us engaged in. I’m not necessarily talking about sinful activities, I’m simply referring to a schedule filled with “things to do.” It seems this time of year especially there is a huge list of “things to do.” From Christmas parties at work, to family gatherings, to church services, and the always dreaded Christmas shopping. Through all the clutter in our life and the busyness in our life, I want to encourage us to not forget or neglect four very important things.
First, don’t forget or neglect Bible study and prayer time. These are our chance to communicate with our Heavenly Father and His opportunity to communicate back with us. Bible study and prayer are also a source of renewal. God’s Word can re-energize us each day. The second thing we shouldn’t forget or neglect is corporate worship. Hebrews 10:25 remind us, “forsake not the assembling of ourselves together as is the manner of some.” During this time of year there is a greater chance that we will have scheduling conflicts. It seems like the closer to Christmas we get, the more gatherings we have. Another source of strengthening is worshipping with our brothers and sisters in Christ. It also helps us keep our focus on the “reason for the season.” The third thing we should not forget or neglect is our family. We work so many hours and we try to make a little extra money this time of year. Many times it is because we want to make sure that we have nice things to give our children, our spouse, or family members for Christmas. The truth of the matter is this, you can always replace the “stuff” you give to others that gets lost or stolen. But you can’t replace the time you miss with your family, and they can’t replace you. Go ahead and schedule time to be with your family, because if you don’t you will end up leaving it out. Finally, you should not forget or neglect rest. Have I mentioned yet how busy this time of year is? It is very common for us to work/play an average of 18-20 hours a day during the Christmas season. Since there are only 24 hours in a day, that schedule doesn’t leave much time to recharge. All the way back in Genesis God demonstrated the principle of Sabbath for us. He worked six days and rested on the seventh. If it was good enough for God, then it must be good enough for us. Build into your schedule each day and one day per week a time of rest. It is a time you can read your Bible and pray, spend time with your family, worship, or simply be still. When we get worn out and worn down many times we get sick or we get grumpy (or in many cases both). It is during these times that we are more susceptible to temptations from the devil and many times with increased temptation comes increased sin in our life. I propose to you that if we do not neglect these four things during this Christmas season, we will not only remember the reason for the season but we will also enjoy this time of year.
By His grace and through His strength may we live for Him!