Pastor Lester A. McCorn
Senior Pastor, Pennsylvania Avenue A.M.E. Zion Church
Ecclesiastes 3:1-17 - New International Version (NIV)
A Time for Everything
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.
9 What do workers gain from their toil? 10 I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. 13 That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. 14 I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him.
15 Whatever is has already been,
and what will be has been before;
and God will call the past to account.
16 And I saw something else under the sun:
In the place of judgment—wickedness was there,
in the place of justice—wickedness was there.
17 I said to myself,
“God will bring into judgment
both the righteous and the wicked,
for there will be a time for every activity,
a time to judge every deed.”
It's about time means that something has finally occurred. At long last a situation or circumstance has finally happened. It means that time is the reason for a matter. Something should be understood based on the meaning of time. Today, we likely all feel it is about time. At a time where more black families and communities have to be concerned about the safe return of their husbands and sons. Racism is recycling in our nation. “There is a time for everything and a season for everything under the heavens.” Time is a strange phenomenon. There are patterns that help us to see things in real time. When we worked in the fields we could predict the seasons and the times because we were in tune with the patterns, climate, and nation. God is up to something. God is moving in an orderly way. God specializes in creating order out of chaos. God has the power to step through our time and do what only he can do in his time. We often say everything happens for a reason. He may not come when we want him to, however he is always on time. Time is outside of our time, however, God meets us in our mundane situations. There are natural events in the cycle of life. “In everything there is a season and a purpose.” I can't celebrate and appreciate sunshine unless I have had some rain in my life. Everything that is appointed is not necessarily an appropriate time. There are things that will happen in your life that won't make sense at all. There is a time for everything. This is not the time to give up. This is not the time to quit and throw up our hands. For every event or activity there is an equal counter activity. It is now time for us to do something and stop being so reactive. It is time to birth, to plant, to heal, to gather, to search, to love, and to work for peace. The people of God must do something because God is up to something. When evil men plot, good men must take action. There is such a time as being too late.
1. It’s about time to tell the truth and speak truth to power. Stop sticking our heads in the sand and acting like people are going to approve us. Stop trying to wait for people to like us. Stop being tired of trying to educate people about racism, civil rights, and social justice. We live in a racist and slave bound society today. We have to deal with the reality that we live in a racist nation where some have privilege, and supremacy is real. We must tell the truth. We were born black, we are going to die black. Racism is everywhere in our nation. We love everybody. However, we will not lose ourselves. Integration was assimilation. It is time to tell the truth. There ought to be more majority churches upset about what is happening in our nation to the black community. Ecclesiastes says that there is a time for everything. We are human beings - we are gifted. We have to tell the truth.
2. We have to tell the time. If someone asks us what time is it, we must tell them that it is about time. It is about time that public officials stop lining their pockets and instead take care of the people. It is time for police officers to stop profiling some people and instead care for and protect all people. In Ecclesiastes, it says that everything that is happening now has happened before. Freedom summers that happened in the 1950s and 1960s happened around the same time as what we are going through today. The enemy will try to wipe us out. This is spiritual warfare. We wrestle not against flesh and blood. The devil is very predictable. Satan does the same thing over and over again. It is time for us to see the seasons of the time. However, God is still in charge. Satan had to get permission when he messed with Job. God is looking at us and saying Satan, I see what you are trying to do. But those are my children. I have their back just like I had Job's back. “Time is filled with swift transitions. We must build our hopes on things eternal and hold to God's unchanging hand. Build your hopes on things eternal, and hold to God's unchanging hands.” You can make it through the valley, a night of crying, black on black crime, injustices, gang warfare, the criminal injustice system… because God has promised us the “promised land.” “Walk together Children and don't you get weary.” Don't give up, don't give in, and don't give out. God will see you through. Just hang in there. God will be there for you. Just hold to his hand because it is about time. Amen.