Meditation on Ecclesiastes 3:11-13
“The Eternal Creator has made everything appropriate in its time. The Forever Wisdom has also set eternity in each person’s heart, yet so that humanity will not find out the work which the Creator has done from the beginning even to the end. I know that there is nothing better for human beings than to rejoice and to do good in one's lifetime; moreover, that every person who eats and drinks sees good in all his labor—it is the gift of God." (Ecclesiastes 3:11-13).
What is life all about? The reality is that human beings now live “East of Eden” and there are seasons of joy and some of sorrow (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8). Times of victory and times of defeat. The circumstances of life now require from us a wide range of responses and wisdom to know what the appropriate actions to take to engage the people and events around us. There is a “good” response and one that would be “evil”. So wisdom is knowing the healthy response that brings life into events while foolishness is producing unhealthy and harmful actions into life. Life is about learning how to live in the wisdom of eternity so that our responses are healthy, life-giving, and joyful in everyday time. There is a particular “good” that each of us is to do in our lifetime. This is to be our life passion, work, or calling. It is the particular way we are to express LOVE out of our unique intellect, personality, and abilities. It is the “masterpiece” we are allowed and invited to create out of our lives (Ephesians 2:10). To fail to strive for this by a life of faith and love, is to fall into a “vanity of vanities” life that produces no good legacy and ends in a meaningless death (Ecclesiastes 3:19) and then faces unhappy judgment by the Creator who gave life (Ecclesiastes 12:13,14). Now all of us have failed to seek such a life. We have fallen short. Our goal has not been to attain “the good” and we have gone astray. But the Creator has sent the Redeeming Shepherd, the Lord Jesus, to lay down HIS life for our lives, pay the just judgment for our life of vanity, and by HIS resurrection to give us a new life, with fresh potential to attain “the good” for which we were made. So now we are free to live a life of faith, love, and hope as we are lead by the Good Shepherd Jesus, and see our lives become fruitful and meaningful. By HIS grace we are saved from our “vanity of vanity” and given the joy of a good life (Ephesians 2:1-10). What is life about? To connect the eternal to the temporal so that daily life is seen to have great meaning in light of the larger reality in which God has placed us. To see that we have been given a role to play in the divine drama of the universe and that to take joy in our particular part of the Creator’s production seeking to do and define the particular good that our unique soul is to produce in our lifetime. A great part of our joy should be that at infinite cost our Redeeming Creator has forgiven our desertion of this plan and restored us in the Messiah Jesus to be able to “begin again” a life of faith, love, and hope as a free gift of eternal grace. Let us not waste such a costly opportunity! Commit yourself “To Life” as YOUR Creator intended this day. L’Chaim "The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil." (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14) Prayer Good Shepherd Jesus, thank you for purging me of the guilt of my lawless deeds, words, and attitudes by YOUR great sacrifice and resurrection. Help me now to remember what my life is about. Keep me from losing myself in the endless vanities of a life without purpose but instead seek to do good, love justice, and live in realistic humility before YOU who are eternal. LORD, YOU have had mercy, now give me super mercy and let me not fail to produce the unique “good” that YOU have planted as the potential for my life. Amen