“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun? Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises. The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course.All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again. All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Ecclesiastes 1:2-9 NIV
Unless a person understands the stage of life Solomon was in, one could think that Solomon was decreeing that life was not worth living. But that is far from the case and since his proclamation came before Christ arrived, we know that every moment of life is precious in His sight and when we accept His gift of salvation–everything has meaning.
Having received the gift of wisdom–beyond measure of any other mortal–Solomon lived according to God’s Word until he connected with many women who did not know God and in fact worshiped other gods. Gradually, he began practicing some of the forbidden rituals (the danger of being unequally yoked in faith and beliefs) and by the time he realized he fallen far from where God desired him to be, he realized he had wasted the gift given to him. Wisdom without knowledge produces disasters. Knowledge without wisdom is just as catastrophic. This is why we’re told, “Wisdom is the principle thing, and in all our getting, get understanding.”
Giving a teenager a car when they don’t know how to drive usually has negative consequences. They know what the car is, but they do not know the details of how the car functions and without instruction, the car may never move and doesn’t benefit them. However, with instruction and knowledge of not just how the car functions, but also the laws pertaining to legally driving, and understanding consideration on the roads, the car benefits them.
We have been given a great gift–salvation–and until we know what it means and begin to practice the instructions in The Word–we may never benefit from the gift. If we never understand the benefit of salvation, life really is meaningless.
With the abundance of grace we’ve also been given, we learn from our mistakes and commit to doing better and as we continue in life, we’ll see just how great our God is and how wonderful life can be–even when we miss the mark–as long as we get back on the path.
There are valuable lessons living provides for us, so let’s live to the glory of God and learn how we please Him and be a blessing to others. Living for Him, gives life meaning that is sometimes difficult to understand and express, but so worthwhile.