9 You who are young, be happy while you are young,
and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth.
Follow the ways of your heart
and whatever your eyes see,
but know that for all these things
God will bring you into judgment.
10 So then, banish anxiety from your heart
and cast off the troubles of your body,
for youth and vigor are meaningless.
12 Remember your Creator
in the days of your youth,
before the days of trouble come
and the years approach when you will say,
“I find no pleasure in them”—
2 before the sun and the light
and the moon and the stars grow dark,
and the clouds return after the rain;
3 when the keepers of the house tremble,
and the strong men stoop,
when the grinders cease because they are few,
and those looking through the windows grow dim;
4 when the doors to the street are closed
and the sound of grinding fades;
when people rise up at the sound of birds,
but all their songs grow faint;
5 when people are afraid of heights
and of dangers in the streets;
when the almond tree blossoms
and the grasshopper drags itself along
and desire no longer is stirred.
Then people go to their eternal home
and mourners go about the streets.
6 Remember him—before the silver cord is severed,
and the golden bowl is broken;
before the pitcher is shattered at the spring,
and the wheel broken at the well,
7 and the dust returns to the ground it came from,
and the spirit returns to God who gave it.
8 “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.
“Everything is meaningless!”
The Conclusion of the Matter
9 Not only was the Teacher wise, but he also imparted knowledge to the people. He pondered and searched out and set in order many proverbs. 10 The Teacher searched to find just the right words, and what he wrote was upright and true.
11 The words of the wise are like goads, their collected sayings like firmly embedded nails—given by one shepherd. 12 Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them.
Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.
13 Now all has been heard;
here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
for this is the duty of all mankind.
14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil.
A passage you could think about the rest of your life with trepidation.
Youth wasted on the young? Old age not for sissies? The attitudes of this Teacher are ... glum. Meaningless - The Teacher cries about life. Odd for Solomon. He accomplished so much. Actually, Solomon had the life we'd all lead - he had a lot just handed to him.
David worked very hard and Solomon swept in after the rest of the family went sour on the success after living in a literal ditch in a 'town' called Ziklag. Sure, some of the sons were born in luxury - some were not. I digress.
It really depends where you want your story to stop.
Where is your Hope, Faith and Love?
Poker has a term called - the River. This is when you hang in there and keep working the cards dealt to you. Keep hoping for the opportunity, working the hand dealt to you is going to bring fruition.
Jesus told Nicodemus "You have to be born again." That gives some people the horrors - they don't see their lives as born again.
Hope anew and a fresh. Let the old wine of expectations and hurts go. Be filled with the new wine of joy in what is. Gratitude for the day. Gratitude that seasons change. Believing God is going to carry us through.
We cannot do this by ourselves.
Nothing is Impossible with Jesus the Lord.
The Word of God says His Mercies renew each day. Fake good humor is not going to pull up our boot straps. We have to rely on God - His Mercies Renew. Our own efforts are always flawed.
The Disciple John is the opposite of Ecclesiastes 11.
This cave has the same view today. Inspiring. Seeing the mercy of God renew. Look carefully at the top photo an entrance. A narrow gate.
John was thrown into a cave on the Island of Patmos. John is officially known as John The Evangelist. Well, he was older. Washed up, done in. No more ministry. Emperor Domitian reigned from 81 - 96 A.D. John's task from Jesus was complete, Mary had died in her old age. Tertullian's testimony (De praescript., xxxvi), John had been thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil before the Porta Latina at Rome without suffering injury. John was fortunate to be banished. Even if he was just utterly ruined. Yet... Instead history records him as alive and vital. Fighting Gnostics in the 2nd Century. Explaining Jesus to unruly Jews. Irenaeus, bishop of Lyon c. 180 writes of John's very long life into the 2nd Century.
Revelation 1:9 states:
"I, John, both your brother and companion in tribulation... was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ."
I am accustomed to any and every situation—to being filled and being hungry, to having plenty and having need. 13I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.
I pray that out of the riches of His glory, He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being
growing in the knowledge of God, 11being strengthened with all power according to His glorious might so that you may have full endurance and patience, and joyfully 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light.
We can see what John the Disciple saw ~ Today. Patmos.
1 Peter 2:9
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
The interesting thing is, both the first words of Jesus to Peter, and the last words, were "Follow me".
The first words to Peter are in Mark 1:17: "Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men."
The last words: John 21:22
Jesus answered, "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me."
Tonight, we got in the car to go to the grocery and we were listening to KSBJ Christian radio, where the economy and bills were considered in the song. We got to the grocery, as we got out of the car, not knowing Armando Pérez, Pitbull, the singer was rapping at the Woodland Mitchell Pavilion. He was Yelling about "It's on Fire!" "It's on Fire!" Which quickly got our very earnest attention. As we returned to the car, after getting groceries, Pitbull thanked the crowd for spending their hard earned money on his concert. (Which we thought was nice.) He said, "Have the time of your life, forget all the times and the concerns and your worries." Then Pitbull listed a long list of concerns, he must have listed 15 things. When the rapper got to "Forget the ongoing, never ending Presidential Election." Then, the singer got a filled Stadium screaming Approval. And he sang about the concerns of the economy.
We are lifting up the current times. The Economy and Employment. Where even Rock Concerts have concerns.
Will Father GOD let go of us? No, Father God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are always going to hear and help and work all things to good for those who Love God.
Help us, guide us, lead us, sustain us, comfort us, be Our Helper each Day.
We follow You and ask Your Blessing on those we Love. Our concerns like surgery, and illness and good passing. Domestic harmony. Communities, Churches, our Nations and the World calling upon Jesus. All inhabitants of Your Creation. Like Dogs who growl.
We will have Your Joy.
Amen in Jesus!
♔ Lord Jesus Saves! †