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Summary: This sermon explains how God works all the little things of our life out for the good, if we walk with Him.

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A Gift Worth Waiting For

Ecclesiastes 3:1-11; Luke 2:1-7; Galatians 4:4

December 16, 2001

Intro:

A. [Deliver Us from Failing, Citation: R.E. Lawrie, Rehoboth, Del. "Lite Fare," Christian Reader.]

During seminary, the professors always began their classes with prayer.

Before one final exam, a student timidly raised his hand.

"Yes, what is it?" the professor asked sternly.

"Sir, aren’t you forgetting one thing?"

"And just what would that be?"

"To pray for us," the student gulped.

1. "Lord, deliver us from failing" seems to be the extent of a lot of people’s understanding of the hand of God in their lives.

2. Asking God to simply keep us from failing is an sad view of the providence of God.

B. Is that the extent of God’s involvement in our lives?

1. Does God really care about what happens in our lives?

2. Does God care when people think and say bad things about us?

3. Does God care when circumstances aren’t going our way?

4. Does God care when things don’t look good for us?

5. Is God really involved in the details of our lives?

C. Today as we continue thinking about the indescribable gift that God has given us in Christmas, today we will think about A Gift Worth Waiting For.

I. There is a time for everything!

Ecclesiastes 3:1-11, There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: 2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, 3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, 6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, 7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, 8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. 9 What does the worker gain from his toil? 10 I have seen the burden God has laid on men. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.

A. God has made everything beautiful in its time.

1. God knows everything!

2. God knows everything about our lives!

3. God knows all the details about our lives!

4. God knows when its time for us to be born and He knows when its time for us die.

5. God knows when we need to cry and when we need to laugh.

6. God knows when we need to mourn and when we need to dance.

7. God knows when we need to be silent and when we need to speak.

8. God knows everything about us!

9. God knows every moment and detail about our lives and He makes EVERYTHING beautiful in its time.

B. God has set eternity in our hearts.

1. God has placed in our hearts the knowledge that this is not all their is.

2. God has placed in our hearts that there was time before we were born and there will be time after we die.

3. God has placed in our hearts that there was something before the world began and there is something after the world will end.

4. God has set eternity in our hearts.

C. God has control of the beginning and the end.

1. God is in control of it all!

2. God was in control before time began and He will be in control long after time has ended!

3. God knows all the minute details of our lives and He also knows why everything happens.

4. God sees the little picture of the moments and the details of our lives and He also sees the big picture of how everything unfolds in the light of eternity.

5. We cannot understand what God has done from beginning to end, but God knows it all!

6. God saw the details and moments in Mary’s life and God also saw the big picture of the birth of the promised Messiah in light of eternity as well.

II. Sometimes the timing seems bad!

Luke 2:1-7, In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to his own town to register. 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

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