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Monday, July 12, 2010

It's All by Chance. . . God's Chance

The Bible is such an interesting book. Some books are written in a graceful poetic style while others bear details of astonishing wars. Some give instruction, others encouragement. Some are exciting to read . . . and some are less interesting to those who do not appreciate details. One of the things they have in common is all of them are important.

Think about this verse. "I returned, and saw under  the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all." Ecc. 9:11. Read it again, but slower. This revelation, written by Solomon, strikes me as very interesting. The more I think about it the more it makes sense.

It is easy for the swift to run the race, for the strong to fight the battle, for the wise to obtain bread, for the understanding to find riches, and it is expected of the skilled to receive favour. But what if the lame were to win the race? What would people think if the weak won the battle? Who would understand if the unlearned were to obtain bread, and the ignorant to find riches? What if the untrained received the favour? That would be supernatural, something that only God could do. When that happens we can't claim all the glory because it was not done through our own strength, but through God's strength.

The end of this verse says, "but time and chance happeneth to them all." If God wants us to do something great or have great things - weather it be a ministry, a nice house, or an outgoing personality- it will happen. There is no need for us to strive after something that was never meant to be ours. So often we stress and worry ourselves because we are not what we think we should be, when maybe that's not what God wants for our individual life. Like the Psalmist said, "Be still and know that I am God." If we will slow down and meditate on God then we will see that He is able to bring whatever He wants in our lives.

But this is no excuse to sit back and watch God work. The verse before says "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest." We should all work hard, but don't get discouraged when the things we want don't come about. God is in control, "time and chance happeneth to them all."

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