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What Time is It?

by Paul Ramsey

Ecc. 3:1-8

“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens:

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 from embracing,
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.”

Ecc. 8:6 “For there is a proper time and procedure for every matter, though a person may be weighed down by misery.”

Ecc. 9:11 “The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.”

Rom. 13:11 “And do this understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.”

Romans 5:6 “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.”

Gal. 6:9 “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

**Instead of striving for balance, we need to understand the proper time…

*Striving for balance often produces frustration and guilt because we can’t do everything equally well at the same time.

* Instead of balance, we should strive to follow the natural rhythms of life: two types

  • Chronos – cyclical rhythms - Annual, quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily – these are built into nature and we ignore them at our peril – chronobiology
  • Kairos – experienced time, nonrecurring and not as predictable, the right moment in time

Mark 1:14 “The time is fulfilled”

Eph. 5:16 “Make the most of every opportunity (kairos)”

  • Chronos – quantity of time, regular measurements
  • Kairos – quality of time, not fixed lengths of time but a particular period in your life
  • Chronos – heartbeats, birthdays, holidays, seasons
  • Kairos – being born, growing up, getting married, having kids, growing old, dying

Chronos rhythm strategies:

  1. Pace yourself
  2. Build rituals
  3. Oscillate between intensity and renewal

Kairos Rhythm strategies:

  1. Release expectations
  2. Seize opportunities
  3. Anticipate what’s next

It’s always time:

  1. To be close to God
  2. For family
  3. Share your faith
  4. Help the poor
  5. Live righteously

*But we don’t always do them all at the same time or with the same intensity!!

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