“For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.”
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NLT)
With three quarters of the year 2020 already completed, this has been an extraordinary year to say the least.
So many things have happened this year that it almost gives a new meaning to the word “everything.” Worldwide, nationally, locally and individually, we all have experienced so many times of seasonal boundaries.
Personally, I love this time of year, especially the month of October. As a sports enthusiast, I really enjoy the different major arenas. Baseball concludes with the World Series, and both college and professional football are a few games into their respective seasons. However, professional basketball and hockey, which normally begin in October, concluded this month. This occurred because of the awful COVID 19 pandemic that interrupted and delayed their seasons this past spring.
As I began to read and reflect on this passage of scripture from the book of Ecclesiastes, chapter 3, the phrase “a time for every activity” caught my attention. Verses two through eight talk about time in respect to; birth/death; planting/harvesting; killing/healing; tearing/mending; loving/hating and finally war and peace. They tell of a time of contrasts, differences and boundaries.
For instance, in sports, boundaries are important in determining game conclusions, whether wins or losses. Boundaries can be indicated by recognized lines whether they are designated as end lines, goal lines or sidelines. Players in all sports are guided by how well they move or navigate in their sport established boundaries, because they can’t play baseball with a football and play basketball with a hockey puck.
For example, anyone who goes out of bounds, even by an inch, can be penalized and a play can be recalled. So many times I’ve heard people say that “it’s a game of inches.” The assigned referee(s) are the only ones who can make the call when it comes to boundary violations which can often prove to be very sad and costly in many cases. Boundary calls can make or break a game’s conclusion.
However, ordinary people must recognize the seasonal boundaries of life that can and will come our way. I believe that all of us at some time in our lives have experienced one or more boundaries. There have been times of tearing down and building up. Times of crying and laughing; grieving and dancing. We’ve had times of keeping and times when some things needed to be thrown away. Importantly in this moral, political and social seasonal time of life, it’s essential we recognize the time of being quiet and a time to speak up.
These recent times, especially the past few months, have shown to be extraordinarily disturbing to say the least. “Every activity under heaven” is being watched, and we cannot be caught being out of bounds. Psalms 66:9 says, “Our lives are in his hands, and he keeps our feet from stumbling.”
The great referee in heaven is watching the set boundaries and has the penalty flag ready to be thrown into play.
In this time of seasonal boundaries, let us remember that the cost is too high and the expense too great.
Blessing, love and peace.
Henry Badie Jr., the associate minister of Pentecostal Temple Church of God in Christ in Florence, is a member of the Morning News’ Faith & Values Advisory Board. Contact him and other board members at email@example.com.
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