As some of you know, I love the book of Ecclesiastes.
It has truly deepened my perspective and given me language for things God has been stirring in me over the past year and a half.
As I’ve reflected on the brevity and temporal nature of much of what we fill our lives with now, two questions have come up.
What’s the best way to live this short and unpredictable life that God has given us?
How do we make our time on this earth count?
The best way to live this life.
As I watch others strive for success, recognition, wealth, a better this-or-that, and more, more, more, it’s not hard to see they’re missing it.
They are caught in a pattern of striving and more, and fail to relax, rest, deepen and discover contentment.
Solomon sums it up so well:
“And this, too, is a very serious problem. People leave this world no better off than when they came. All their hard work is for nothing—like working for the wind. Throughout their lives, they live under a cloud—frustrated, discouraged, and angry.
Even so, I have noticed one thing, at least, that is good. It is good for people to eat, drink, and enjoy their work under the sun during the short life God has given them, and to accept their lot in life... To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life—this is indeed a gift from God”
- Is your focus on improving your life, having more, imagining the next thing you’ll accomplish or acquire, or always feeling a need to better your situation? Do you “live in a cloud–frusterated, discouraged, and angry?”
- Or do you seek contentment right where you are? Are you willing to simply be who and where God has you, in sweet fellowship with Him?
I’ve lived both. And I can honestly say, it’s #2 brings that freedom and happiness every time.
Contentment is the secret.
How to make our time here count.
Even if we discover the secret of a content life, it could ultimately still be meaningless. Although our quality of life will be great, we will eventually die and it will all be but a wisp of smoke in the wind.
Yet there is this other thing, this other component of living a satisfied life that brings an element of eternity to our days.
At the very end of the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon sums up his teachings and wisdom with these sentences:
…Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty. God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.
Of all the glorious things you may want to do for God, what He wants is your simple obedience.
Obedience is the secret.
Obedience to living God’s way and following His lead throughout your life.
If you seek contentment and walk in obedience to God, you will discover a TRULY satisfied life.
One of happiness. One that matters.
What do you need to let go of today in order to pursue contentment and choose obedience?
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