Ecclesiastes 12:11 says "The words of the wise are like goads." Dr. Groothuis is a very wise man who I respect a ton. So when he makes a comment about stepping out and taking risks (like the comment he made on my last post) I seriously take it before the Lord. And sure enough, his words proved to be a goad (a poker that moves cows). Thanks Dr. Groothuis! So refreshing in the face of passivity of not wanting to do too much or risk too much for the sake of comfort and saftey.
As I spent time in Eccl. 11 this morning, I also got to hear Warren Wiersbe share his commentary on the chapter. How cool that books like that are available to us! So, here is his input as well as the footnotes of my bible.
11:1 talks aobut being adventurous and taking risks and not always playing it safe.
11:2 "Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight; you do not know what disaster may come upond the land." Meaning to diversify your efforts.
11:4 "Whoever watches the wind will not plant; whoever looks at the clouds will not reap." Meaning that when you are moving you are part of the action/adventure and if you are not in the action you are not going to reap the reward.
11:5 "As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you can not understand the world of God, the Maker of all things."
As a side note, this got me thinking about mission, purpose and values. It is good to stay focused on the specific end goal that God has given and put all energy in that direction. I dont think these verses are contrary to that but is talking about using variation in reguards to the how of going about the mission and purpose.
11:6 "Sow your seed in the morning and at evening let your hands not be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well."
So, there is the words of Eccl., here is the applicable commentary of W. Wiersbe.
"Is life worth living? That was the question the Preacher raised when he began the discourse that we call Ecclesiates. After experimenting and investigating 'life under the sun,' he concluded, 'No, life is not worth living.' He gave four aguments to support his conclusion: the monotony of life, the vanity of wisdom, the futility of wealth, and the certainty of death.
Being a wise man, Solomon reviewed his arguments and this time brought god into the picture. What a difference it made. He realized that life was not monotonous but filled with challenging situations from God, each in its own time and each for its own purpose. He also learned that wealth could be enjoye and employed to the glory of God. Though man's wisdom couldnt explain everything, Solomon concluded that it was better to follow God's wisdom than to practice mans folly. As for the certainty of death, there is no way to escape it; and it ought to motivate us to enjoy life now and make the most of the opportunities God gives us."
In presenting his practical application he presents four pictures of life.
1. Life is an adventure-live by faith
2. Life is a gift- enjoy it
3. Life is a school- learn your lessons
4. Life is a stewardship- fear God
"As I grow older, I'm asking God to keep me from getting set in my ways in a life that is routine, boring and predictable... when I trusted Jesus Christ as my Savior, I married adventure and that meant living by faith and expectting the unexpected.
Solomon used two activities to illustrate his point: the merchant sending out his ships (vs 1-2) and the farmer sowing his seed (vs 3-6). In both activities, a great deal of faith is required, because neither the merchant nor the farmer can control the circumstances. The ships might hit a reef, meet a storm, or be attacked by pirates, and the cargo lost. Bad weather, blight, or insects might destroy the crop, and the farmers labor would be in vain. However, if the merchant and the farmer waited until the circumstances were ideal, they would never get anything done... Man is ignorant of the future, but he must not allow his ignorace to make him so fearful that he becomes either careless or paralyzed."
So in the face of moving forward with selling our house/buying a ministry house by campus and adopting snowflakes (baby embryos), Austin going to Haiti for spring break... and another biggie I am not willing to share yet. Heck ya! Bring on the great adventure!