There is a time for everything.

These irises make a glorious appearance every February in our front yard. 
I love everything about them. The vibrant purple color. The unique design. The contrast between the rich purple petals and the green leaves. The long stems. All of it!
I gaze upon them and smile every time I walk outside. I know they will not last long, so I want to drink in their beauty before they disappear. (Wow, that sounded like something Anne (of Green Gables) would say! <grin>)
As I enjoy the irises this year, I am reminded of Ecclesiastes.

For everything there is a season, and 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 pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3

Life is full of contrasts. We cannot avoid them. Negatives and positives. Good and bad. Ups and downs. Highs and lows. Joy and sorrow. All of them make up life this side of heaven.

Last weekend Dennis and I spent Friday evening witnessing one of our sweet couples commit their lives to one another in a beautiful wedding ceremony.
We spent Sunday evening sitting next to a hospital bed praying with another young couple whom we adore.
One night filled with joy.
The other night filled with unknowns, questions, and fears.

From a human perspective, the contrast seems harsh. Inconsistent. Illogical.
But Scripture says it is natural. Realistic. Expected.

So we must rest in such truth. There IS a time for everything.
We do not have to understand it, we do not even have to like it, but we must trust the One who created all things. Including time.
His thoughts are not our thoughts, His ways are not our ways.
And thank goodness they aren't!

I love that Solomon follows the "time and season" verses with these words:
He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear Him.
Everything God does will endure forever.
What a precious thought!
What a wonderful TRUTH!

Thank You, Lord, for the gift of Your Word that reminds us that there IS a time for everything. Times of joy or times of sorrow - both are from Your hand, and both are for a purpose. 
You are the good Shepherd who leads us to lie beside still waters and - leads us through the valley of the shadow of death. We do not have to fear anything - because You are always with us. May we learn to love and fear You more so we can rest contentedly ... in Your sovereignty.