Just a quick word, Rooted will be taking a little break. I’m leaving tomorrow for a wedding in New Orleans and then my family and I will be on a family the following week. Rooted will resume on June 13. Look forward to resuming then!
Today we will read Ecclesiastes 4: 1-8:
Again I saw all the oppressions that are practiced under the sun. Look, the tears of the oppressed—with no one to comfort them! On the side of their oppressors there was power—with no one to comfort them. 2 And I commended the dead, who have already died, more than the living, who are still alive, 3 but better than both is the one who has not yet been and has not seen the evil deeds that are done under the sun.
4 Then I saw that all toil and all skill in work come from one person’s envy of another. This also is vanity and a chasing after wind.
5 Fools fold their hands
and consume their own flesh.
6 Better is a handful with quiet
than two handfuls with toil
and a chasing after wind.
7 Again, I saw vanity under the sun: 8 the case of solitary individuals, without sons or brothers; yet there is no end to all their toil, and their eyes are never satisfied with riches. “For whom am I toiling,” they ask, “and depriving myself of pleasure?” This also is vanity and an unhappy business.
One of the things that we’ve seen the Teacher say is a source of worth and meaning is the duty of work. Work hard at the task you have in front of you, you can be satisfied in that, that is all that we have is our work. But today we see him say that, well, even that can be plagued with envy. So even that “good” thing has to it potential pitfalls.
Verse talks of not being satisfied with riches. I think that’s a key point we are seeing over and over again in this book, this world cannot and will not be able to satisfy, no matter what it is. Even the good things, like the work of your hand, can be overcome with envy.
I think one of our takeaways from this reading is that we must not look for satisfaction in things that cannot satisfy. Like the things of this world. Look to the deeper, the true. Look to faith. Look to God. Look to beauty.
We spend so much time in life trying to find meaning and value on things, that may even be good but are not enteral. And they, these not eternal things, can never truly satisfy the hunger in our hearts for something deeper.
Something for God.
Don’t settle for the things of this world. Look above. Look to life. Look to faith. That’s where life is found. Don’t settle.
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