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When my toddler was fast asleep in his crib, I slipped my hands into a pair of old gardening gloves, knelt in the dirt, and got to work with my spade. Bent over my pregnant belly, hands in the soil, the evidence of life kicked and turned within me. The gravity of the moment was lost on me at the time, but I see it now. Acting on hope.

King James Version (KJV)

Believing promises. Burying seeds in the darkness, knowing a thing can only produce something beautiful if it dies first John Ecclesiastes 3 tells us there is a time for every matter under heaven.

A time to be born, and a time to die. A time to plant, and a time to uproot. A time to weep, and a time to laugh.

The Message of Ecclesiastes: A Time to Mourn, and a Time to Dance

A time to mourn, and a time to dance. For our precious daughter, that Monday afternoon in April was a time to die. For us, it was a time to mourn. But it was also a time to actively hope in promises that life comes from death. It was a time to dance because our child was in the presence of her Savior. That day, not knowing what the night would hold, the Lord led me through the motions of actively hoping and believing that death brings life. And so, I planted. Life and death are not respecters of each other.

‘A time to mourn and a time to dance’

It took a good while to process the news. To an extent, I am still processing it in light of this the one year anniversary. This week is a time to mourn for us, our friends, and the families who lost so much that day. This week also includes the opposite extreme—celebration. The second anniversary for me this week will be the joy of celebrating ten years of marriage with Emily.

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I am a truly blessed man to have been given by God such a lovely and godly spouse. So this week is also a time for my wife and me to laugh and to dance in joy of the grace God has given us in our marriage. Two extremes found in one verse and in one week for us. These anniversaries share more than the same week. Ten years ago when got married, Jamison was a groomsman in our wedding. Our joy and sorrow this week are intertwined. Ecclesiastes helps us navigate the tensions of life in a fallen world.

This book meets us in the battle of living in a world full of both evil and good. This world is not as it should be, we feel it in every breath we take. It is bent because we sinned, and in response, God has cursed man and creation.

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There is no power here on earth which can make straight what God has bent cursed. Who then can make it straight again? God alone. It is not in our ability to redeem ourselves or this world.

Ecclesiastes 3 NIV - A Time for Everything - There is a time - Bible Gateway

God alone can bring salvation. How then do we live in light of a broken world? Some days we experience ecstatic joy, other days we are left in the darkness of sorrow. This is how this world is between the fall and the second coming. Joyful and sorrowful days exist so that we consider the character of God and our own sinfulness. The days of sorrow show us the wickedness of sin and its cost to us. When we look at the fullness of death and evil it points us to God for we can do nothing to stop death. He alone can make straight again a world which is crooked.

He alone can save and God started to do just that through the life, death, and resurrection of Christ Jesus. Oola's friend flees with Skywalker, but Oola herself remains, jealously thinking she can thus ensure Jabba's patronage for herself alone. However, once at the palace, Oola learns how mistaken she is. Fortunately for her, hope is renewed when she learns from C-3PO that Luke Skywalker is planning a rescue for another prisoner at the palace. Heartened anew, Oola accepts Jabba's demand for her to dance, vowing to herself that this shall be her greatest dance yet.

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