Saturday, 26 September 2020
Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun. -Ecclesiastes 2:11
In writing the book of Ecclesiastes, King Solomon reflects upon his personal life experiences and reaches out to each reader with a deep revelation that life is really meaningless without a right relationship with God.
In the first portion of Chapter 2, Solomon elaborates on how he experimented to find the meaning in life. He spent his life toiling, taking on major projects to accumulate great wealth and took pleasure in all that his heart desired – he did not deny himself any joy. He pursued worldly pleasures and possessions, but he discovered that all of it was a chasing after the wind, giving no real satisfaction or meaning. “But as I looked at everything I had tried, it was all so useless, a chasing of the wind, and there was nothing really worthwhile anywhere.” (Eccl.2:11 TLB)
Whether we like it or not, this is the human condition when we pursue what the world has to offer. Men labor to amass vast wealth, conquer empires, build great cities and accomplish great feats, make a name in the world— yet in the end all his achievements are left behind and he is eventually forgotten! Such labor is in vain; do not bring true happiness or meaning in life. Pursuit of temporary pleasures and a life without God will only result in eternal loss. “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” (Mark 8:36)
Contrary to world view, God’s word teaches us that true happiness and fulfillment comes from living a life that is pleasing to our Heavenly Father. Purpose and meaning in life cannot be found in human endeavors, but only in a life submissive to God and His plans. Jesus expounds on this in the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12) when he call them ‘blessed’ who have a rightful relationship with God and live according to His purpose. We are not to conform to the patterns of this world, but rather our minds are to be renewed in the Holy Spirit (Romans 12:1-2) and with this inner transformation we embark on a beautiful and purpose-filled journey of bringing joy and glory to our Creator.
Explaining the futility of chasing after worldly treasures, Christ Jesus teaches us to, “…provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys.” (Luke 12:33). When we have a passionate personal relationship with God, there is a zeal within us to forgo all else and diligently serve the Lord, laboring in His vineyard. It’s a zeal to see His Kingdom grow through us. Whatever we do, let us do it with joy, knowing that it is the Lord we are serving and our inheritance is from Him. (1 Corinthians 3:23-24)
As children of God, our ultimate purpose in life is to live a life bringing glory to God. “Therefore whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all things to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31) Let every aspect of our life reflect the Christ-like character that glorifies our Heavenly Father and bears witness for others to follow Christ.
Abba Father, I thank You for the clarity of purpose and joy that you have given in my life. I surrender my life to work to accomplish the plans you have set for me. In Jesus’ name. Amen