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Nov 10, 2021

Ecclesiastes 7:2-6

God desires two specific things for every man, woman, boy, and girl—two things: (1) God wants everyone to be saved and (2) God wants everyone to be a growing follower of Jesus.

God desires for everyone to be saved. (1 Timothy 2:4 | John 3:16 | 2 Peter 1:5-8)

As we all know, Solomon was no stranger to the finer things in life, and yet—because he walked away from God right when he was at the top of his game—he learned much of his wisdom the hard way.

1) The Brevity of Life (v. 2)

I can tell you that whenever I’ve been confronted with the brevity of life and the reality of death, my faith has been strengthened. (Psalm 90:12)

A) Assurance:

“We know that if this earthly tent in which we dwell is destroyed, we have a home in heaven not made with human hands.” (2 Corinthians 5:1)

B) Faithfulness:

“So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.” (2 Corinthians 5:9-10)

If you knew you were going to stand before God one day—and you WILL stand before God one day—would it affect the way you live your live now?

C) Presence:

I believe every true follower of Jesus has a desire for the unlimited presence of God that can only be realized on “the other side.”

(Philippians 1:21-24)

2) The Utility of Sorrow (vv. 3-4)

The truth is that God oftentimes uses sorrow to draw us closer to himself, to maximize our dependence upon his—to get us to a point of desperation. (Psalm 119:67,71)

3) The Necessity of Truth (vv. 5-6)

There are three primary parts to hearing hard words from a truth speaker: (1) Biblical community, (2) true words, and (3) open hearts.

A) Biblical Community

God has provided two primary Biblical communities for truth speaking—the church and the family.

B) True Words

Truth speaking is not based on our opinions or preferences; rather, truth speaking is based on the Word of God - “What does the Bible say?”

C) Open Hearts

If you’re in Biblical community as a member of Crossgate Church and/or a committed member of a Life Group, will you receive hard words from a truth speaker with an open heart? Or will you refuse to receive the truth?

4) Conclusion

The bottom line today is that God wants you to be a growing follower of Jesus—not a stagnant follower of Jesus. Sometimes we must be reminded about the brevity of life, sometimes we must experience pain and sorrow, and sometimes we need to hear hard words of truth—and when we do, God provides an incredible opportunity to press in for more of him in our lives.