Summary: On our life’s journey we’ll face many different situations, experience many different experiences, and meet many different people. Sometimes we have gains, and we laugh. Sometimes we have losses, and we cry. Sometimes our feelings are hurt, and we isolat
Opening Statement: On our life’s journey we’ll face many different situations, experience many different experiences, and meet many different people. Sometimes we have gains, and we laugh. Sometimes we have losses, and we cry. Sometimes our feelings are hurt, and we isolate. Sometimes our song is played, and we celebrate. Sometimes we really blow it, and we sink. Sometimes we get it right, and we smile.
Transition: The Bible says that God takes these collective experiences and eventually makes something beautiful out of all of the loose ends.
Text: Ecclesiastes 3:1-11
Title: Something Beautiful!
Opening Statement: Many years ago there were two musical notes that sent terror into everyone who heard them. These two notes worked their way into the psyche of every American. No other notes in the musical scale speak of fear, terror, and death like these two notes. They are an E followed by an F. When they were first played in a particular score, six cellos and three basses played them. When played together, it sounded like this. (Illustrate at piano.) This is John William’s score from Jaws.
Transition: John William’s two musical notes remind me of two notes in life that keep us on the run, terrified about what the future may bring.
Explanation: There’s the “E” note of expectations. It’s all the combined things that we thought life should bring to us: a happy home, a satisfying marriage, a generous salary, and a famous reputation. This “E” note would sound OK if it were just played alone and everybody was able to include it in their life’s score. But when it’s combined with the “F” note of unfulfilled “failed” expectations, the “F” note of divorce, the “F” note of limited income, the “F” note of kids that don’t turn out the way they’re suppose to, then a monster is created. And when we begin to play these two notes together in life, expectations versus reality, we begin to run away as a kind of “Jaws” is released into our lives. We become afraid as we begin to match our expectations with reality.
Question: Wouldn’t it be great if there were some way that all of our young adult dreams could somehow be gathered up along with our unfulfilled expectations, and then something beautiful could be constructed with the pieces? Wouldn’t it be great if we could stop running from unfulfilled expectations? The Bible says that we have this hope in God. It comes from an unlikely place. King Solomon had tried all of life’s offerings. They had left him empty and he journaled skeptically about the whole experience.
Exposition: In Ecclesiastes 3, the idea is propounded that there is an appropriate time for all of life’s experiences and expectations. Notice how the writer uses opposites as a means of covering everything in between. Verses 2-8 are a poem in which Solomon listed 14 opposites.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 For everything there is an appointed time, and an appropriate time for every matter on earth:
3:2 An appropriate time to be born, and an appropriate time to die;