A fascinating part of humanity’s very existence is the presence of gravity.
Gravity is defined as the fundamental force that pulls us toward the center of the earth; technically, it is what keeps us grounded.
In conversation, the use of the word denotes a seriousness or even heaviness of a situation.
While gravity is the thing that pulls us and grounds us physically, I personally look to God’s Word as the key to keeping me grounded spiritually. So today I am looking at Ecclesiastes for wisdom.
In reality, the world wants to tell us how we should think, while God says it this way:
“Just as you don’t know the path of the wind, or how bones develop in the womb of a pregnant woman, so you don’t know the work of God who makes everything.” Ecclesiastes 11:5
For the first time in my lifetime, the vast majority of the things that occupy my time have been put on hold. Many are out of work, schools have been closed, there are no sporting events, and church gatherings have gone on-line.
What we would call a “normal” life has suddenly become a season of waiting to see what time will dictate for us.
And now, it seems that even relationships are in a holding pattern. We were already in a social distancing mandate, and with the recent events surrounding a tragic death of a black man, we find our that our country is in disarray and people are not sure what to do next.
The question I am asking myself is,
“What are you gravitating to now?”
Some are gravitating to the news media. With many of our other distractions missing, our focus is easily drawn toward the television or the internet. Wanting to see a hopeful sign that things are turning around and life can get back to normal, we hold our breath and sit on the edge of our seat in anticipation of a better day.
What if the answer lies not in the solution, but in the process?
My head tells me that there is no easy solution; my heart says, “God is at work!”
“I know that all God does will last forever; there is no adding to it or taking from it. God works so that people will be in awe of Him.” (Ch. 3, v. 14)
While I might search my heart and the heart of God for answers, in prayer I am really searching for peace. I realize that as long as we live in this world, there will be fighting and wars and injustice, so I am not naive. The peace that we are longing for will not be found in our circumstances.
Though that sounds sad, and even defeatist, think about what this must look like from God’s perspective. We have spent much of our lives in pursuit of an education, wealth and material possessions. Much of our free time was spent on focusing on the things that we thought would make us happy–“an endless pursuit of the wind”; and with our Creator watching our endless pursuits, He says to us, “I AM the Prince of Peace!” Maybe, just maybe He wants to take us to a hard place because He has something better for us.
Go read the book of Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament–and before you think that I’ve gone all discouraging on you, let me reassure you with this:
AS LONG AS THERE IS BREATH, THERE IS HOPE
If you woke up this morning, God has given you another day.
What will you do with today? Will you gravitate toward self-pleasure to soothe your frustrations? Will you disconnect from the world around you by watching some mindless television show or hide in a book? Or will you just keep busy to take your mind off the world?
If you choose a book, choose God’s Word. Consider reading Ecclesiastes.
Here are a few of the nuggets I gleaned from reading it today:
1.) Everything is futile. Not fatalistic, but realistic. As long as we live there will be sin on this earth. People will make wrong choices. People are not innately good–they are sinners who need a Savior. God judges us, not by the color of our skin, but the condition of our heart.
“All things are wearisome; man is unable to speak. The eye is not satisfied by seeing or the ear filled with hearing. What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done; there is nothing new under the sun.” (Ch. 1, v.8-9)
2.)The Limitations of Wisdom. We can educate and inform and try to reform, but filling our minds with facts won’t necessarily change our hearts.
“I applied my mind to know wisdom and knowledge, madness and folly; I learned that this too is a pursuit of the wind.” (Ch. 1, v.17)
We want things to change for the good, but God is the only One who is good. Where is the hope in that?
“There is certainly no righteous man on earth who does good and never sins.” (Ch. 7, v. 20)
3.) God is the ultimate judge. Just when I feel like there is no justice in the world, I am reminded that He is still on His throne.
“I said to myself, ‘God will judge the righteous and the wicked, since there is a time for every activity and every work.'” (Ch. 3, v.17)
Hope is found in the One true God who created us all. The same God who gave us an instruction book–the Bible, and the same God who gives us His story so that we can know Him. This same God came to earth and sacrificed Himself to rescue us from ourselves and the sinful world we live in.
My train of thought has gone something like this: “What in the world is going on here?”… “How long, Lord?”… “Could it get any worse?”…”This crazy world is falling apart!”… “Is there any hope?!”…
“When all has been heard, the conclusion of the matter is: fear God and keep His commands, because this is for all humanity. For God will bring every act to judgement, including every hidden thing, whether good or evil.” (Ch. 12, v. 13-14)