Time Change (1 John 2:17)

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Change is an inescapable part of life. It accompanies us from the time we are born till the moment we die. Sometimes we long for it; sometimes we resist it. But through it all, God challenges us to live for eternal values in the midst of a world that is rapidly passing away.

In an address to the Wisconsin State Agriculture Society in 1859, Abraham Lincoln illustrated the profound and tempering effect that change can have on us. He told of an Eastern monarch who asked his counselors to formulate a truth that would apply all times and situations. After careful consideration, they returned with this sentence: “And this too shall pass away.” Said Lincoln, “How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the hour of affliction!

I have thought of those words, “And this too shall pass away,” in both my happiest and saddest moments. They have not only quieted my heart in times of trial, but they have also aroused me from my lethargy. They have made me realize the importance of using wisely the fleeting days God has allotted to me.

When we understand that change can be a stimulus to our growth, it will not threaten our sense of well-being. Only when it overwhelms us to the point of making us bitter or proud are we in danger. If that happens, we are apt to drift away from the One who does not change. And apart from Him and doing His will, it is always true that “this too shall pass away.” – Martin R. De Haan II

Swift to its close ebbs out of life’s little day,

Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;

Change and decay in all around I see –

O Thou who changest not, abide with me! – Lyte

He who would spend time wisely must learn to invest it in eternity.

  • January 3, 1987, Our  Daily Bread