Monday, October 10, 2016

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Youth with Christ
Ecclesiastes 12:1-8

Tom Philip
St. Peters MTC, NJ

12 Remember your creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come, and the years draw near when you will say, “I have no pleasure in them”; 
 
Life is a series of choices and decisions. MercyMe is a contemporary Christian band whose songs are frequently heard on Christian radio stations.  One of their songs, titled ‘Dear Younger Me’, talks about all the lessons we would tell our younger self based on the experiences we face later in life.  Looking in retrospect, we would all do things differently based on the things we learned.
In today’s passage, Solomon tells us that we should not let the days of our youth go by carelessly.  When old age sets in and brings its own difficulties, we will have regrets for not paying closer attention when we were younger.
Our life is only a brief period in all of creation.  Yet our Creator who created this world seeks an intimate relationship with us.  God knows how it will all turn out and as such, our trust needs to be in the One who holds the heavens and earth in His hands.
Youth is a time when we seek to gain independence from authority.  We feel that we know enough and that our experiences are sufficient to make good decisions.  We believe that we will gain freedom by the fulfillment of our self-centered desires but that is essentially the root of all our problems.  Self-centeredness was the reason that Adam disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden.  Self-centeredness is the root of all  violence and all conflict.  Rather than freeing us, our selfish desires enslave us.
As Christians, we need to understand that the freedom we seek is not from the authority of God but freedom from the bondage of sin.  Rather than running away from God, we need to run as the prodigal son ran into the arms of his loving father who was waiting for him.
It is important to note that Solomon states remember ‘your creator’ and not ‘the creator’.  This signifies that there needs to be a relationship with the Creator of this world.  That relationship was made whole by the fact that our Creator is also our Savior, who saved us from eternal death.
It is important to build our life on this foundation while we are young.  It will help us as we go through the various trials of life as we grow older.  The habits and relationships we form when we are young, will stay with us throughout our life.
Life is made up of the decisions we make but the most important decision is to give up our life to our Creator and Savior.

PRAYER

Father God, we thank You for the gift of life.  Help us  not to let our youth go to waste without remembering who You are and what You did to save us.  We pray that we prepare our hearts for You and that You live in us and through us so that Your name may be glorified.  Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
Rather than trying to seek freedom through our own hands, freedom is gained when we put our life into the hands of our Savior who redeemed it through His sacrifice.