To everything, turn, turn, turn. There is a season, turn, turn, turn…
I grew up in a household where I recognized those lyrics by the Byrds before I knew them as words from scripture. It’s a catchy tune that is fun to sing along. But the reality of what scripture tells us isn’t so soft and sweet.
The writer of Ecclesiastes starts off telling us that everything is meaningless. Many of us have felt that way at times. But when tragedy strikes, that’s not the answer we’re looking for. We want to know that there is some meaning to what is taking place, what we’re going through.
And the writer continues on with this at the start of Ecclesiastes 3: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.”
Pretty words. But too often, that’s all they are. Words alone are not very comforting.
If you’re like me, sometimes reading the Word is life-changing. Beauty drips from every verse, fills my heart, and leaves my soul in peace.
And then there are the days when it’s just…dry.
Sometimes reading the Word of God is a time when I remember all that we say that He is and discover all that I am who He says I am.
But what about the times, the days, the seasons, the years, when life is hard and difficult and the last thing I want to do is open a book that reads like a text book instead of the Living Word? What happens when God’s Word falls on the dry ground of my heart?
We read any way.
As I write this, tears prick my eyes. My heart is so tender, bruised, torn, bleeding. All the words that describe: wounded.
How am I supposed to read the Word of God when I feel nothing but pain?