Sand in the Hourglass

Sands in the Hourglass

Like sands through the hourglass, so are the… Uhh nevermind.

“Sand in the Hourglass” is a guest post by Craig Cooper. Take it away, brother Craig!

God has been speaking to me on a recurring theme lately, so I’d like to share and discuss the same message with you guys. That message is: No matter what we do, no matter how hard we try, we are never going to be satisfied on our own. We have a God shaped hole in our souls, and He is the only one who can fill it.

Let me start by sharing some of the scripture that God has been pouring my way that has led me to my understanding of this concept.

Ecclesiastes 1:1-18 (ESV)

1 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. 2 Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. 3 What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? 4 A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. 5 The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises. 6 The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. 7 All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again. 8 All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. 9 What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. 10 Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us. 11 There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after. 12 I the Preacher have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. 13 And I applied my heart to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven. It is an unhappy business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 14 I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind. 15 What is crooked cannot be made straight, and what is lacking cannot be counted. 16 I said in my heart, “I have acquired great wisdom, surpassing all who were over Jerusalem before me, and my heart has had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.” 17 And I applied my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this also is but a striving after wind. 18 For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.

As you read the first chapter of Ecclesiastes, notice one of the major themes: There is no pursuit on Earth that will satisfy you. No amount of knowledge, wisdom, pleasure, or work can ever fill you up and make you whole. However…

John 4:9-14 (ESV)

9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “How is it that you, a Jew, ask for a drink from me, a woman of Samaria?” (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” 11 The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob? He gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did his sons and his livestock.” 13 Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

Read all of John 4 here!

…the only thing that will ever fill you up is the love and mercy of God through Christ Jesus. His salvation and the Holy Spirit will take away all the doubt, fear, and unbelief. They will renew you and set you free.

There will be days in your life when you don’t feel this joy, this unyielding love. This is because of the world we live in, and because of the sin that is a part of every person from the line of Adam and Eve. But God never changes, we change. So what do we have to do? We have to refocus our minds and thoughts on what Jesus did, who He was, and the example He left for us to follow. We have to remove our selfish ambitions and let God replace them with holy pursuits. This means we must put our faith into action.

In seeking to learn more and strengthen our understanding and faith, we find satisfaction in God. The pursuit itself will bring us satisfaction. That’s why it’s so important for Christians to not just take God’s salvation and sit on it, but actually try to put it into practice and develop their faith. After all, the disciples eventually became the apostles. Why is that, you ask? It’s because they were no longer being the students, they were being the teachers and leaders. (This isn’t to say that everyone should specifically be a teacher. Read James 3 for more on that! Everyone, however, should put their faith into action. Our lives reflect our beliefs.)

Dumbledores Office

Do you think Dumbledore would have accomplished much if he had always been the student, always trying to learn but never putting what he knew into practice? Read and dwell on the below scriptures and then try to answer the questions for yourself.

Matthew 10:38-39 (ESV)

38 And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

Read all of Matthew 10 here!

James 2:12-18 (ESV)

12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. 13 For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment. 14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. 18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.

Read all of James 2 here!
I feel that the scripture pretty much speaks for itself here, so I’ll conclude this post by saying: If you find yourself not being satisfied by all of your hobbies or by your career, you’re not alone. You need to refocus on living for Christ first and let those other things fall into their place. If you’d like
further study, I recommend reading the book of James (you can start by clicking here!) The book of James has a good way of putting things into
perspective, and it doesn’t beat around the bush.

Also, here are some questions you might ask yourself in relation to this topic:

  • How do I spend my time?
  • How often do I read the Bible, pray, or thank God for what I have?
  • Do I put my faith into action?
  • What ways can I better spend time with God?
  • What actions can I take to glorify God?

-Craig

A special thanks to you for taking the time to write this thought provoking and important article Craig! I love you, brother! I also love all of you readers out there! Thanks for taking the time to look at this! I’ll be praying for you guys!

-Caleb

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Below is the Photo Source for “Sand in the Hourglass” These artist(s) do not necessarily share my viewpoints, but have kindly released their work under a creative commons licence. Follow the links below to find the original artists and copyright license:

Frozen Hourglass – Sam Bald, Dumbledore’s Office – Scott Ableman

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