Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
There is often a passage quoted from scripture, found in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, that teaches us the concept of seasons. We learn that our situations aren’t meant to be permanent. Instead, we live in the space of duality. We are asked to both endure the trials and embrace the joys because one does not exist without the other. We live in a world of sin yet we serve a God who loves us.
Unfortunately, as we examine our experiences, we tend to focus on the negative. The disappointment and despair can feel overwhelming. In the verse 3 verses of Ecclesiastes, however, I find encouragement:
To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born, And a time to die;
A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted;
A time to kill, And a time to heal;
A time to break down, And a time to build up;
A Time for Healing
Each verse in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, reminds us that life has its seasons, including a time for healing. And as important as healing is, people have often found it easier to remain busy, than to face the trauma. Yet it is only by facing our trauma that we truly overcome it. Giving ourselves the time and space to heal will be one of the healthiest decisions we all can make, because whether or not we realize it – we have all experienced suffering.
Whether it be from abuse, grief, mistreatment at work, divorce, racism, sexism or any other negative experience, we all know what it feels like to be hurt. That pain sinks deep within us, impacting the way we view ourselves and the world around us. Yet if we truly embraced that every season is but for a season, we would find comfort in God’s power. We would know that He could transition us out of any season that has worn us down and tested our resolve.
So why the order of verse 3?
It’s interesting to note that in verse 3, killing comes before healing and breaking down comes before building up. Not all 8 verses express the concept of pain coming before joy. Verse 6, for example, starts with a time to gain and then to lose… a time to keep and then to throw away. Order matters, and in order for us to heal, we must stop giving life to what gives us pain.
Old habits must be destroyed. A distorted view of self must be resolved. Like the glass that was stuck in my foot, healing can only come once the object that does not belong is removed. And once the glass was taken out, it was not placed back on the floor to cause pain for someone else. It was completely thrown away. This action reminds us that trauma isn’t meant to be transferred, it’s meant to be destroyed. And just like that, once the glass was removed, healing came quickly.
We also learn that in order for us to build ourselves up, we must allow some things to break all the way down. When we do this, we place our complete trust in God instead of relying on self to control the narrative. Too often, we try to walk on water with only one foot out of the boat. We cannot experience what God has in store for us without full commitment. Like breaking down soil for planting, it takes time and commitment for us to be nurtured and cultivated for the building up. So be patient in the process but remain courageous. Don’t let fear drive your decision-making. Instead, learn to be bold in God.
Making Space for Healing
I love that God took the time to remind us that no matter what happens, there is always a time for healing. It may seem so far away, almost unreachable, and yet by the grace of God – it is there. God gives us the power to heal from fractured relationships with Him and with others. We can heal from the brokenness, unfairness, and pain felt from our own decisions, and from the choices of those around us.
At times, however, it may feel helpful to push our emotions aside so that we can deal with what is in front of us. Don’t cast them aside for too long. The scriptures tell us:
Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed.Hebrews 12:12-13
So let us heal from the trauma before it dislocates us, making the recovery more difficult. Don’t allow the bitterness to create a home in your heart; don’t let the discomfort stop you from making the tough decisions. Learn to repair what is broken while understanding that what is on this Earth is temporary. It is God’s love for us and His offer of salvation that are permanent. So trust in God. Place both feet out of the boat and let God’s perfect peace carry you through your journey. There is always a time for healing – and now is that time.Print This Devotional