Ecclesiastes 1- The Realization of Vanity In Our Lives

Three things are clear concerning life experiences in the human race. (1) Humans learn from experience. (2) Humans learn from the experience of others. (3) Humans have a hard time breaking form or habit. There are four things that stood out to me as I studied Ecclesiastes on this go round with the Holy Spirit. Let us remember, He is our helper. Amen. The four things done under the sun are:

  1. We toil
  2. We die
  3. Generations come and go
  4. The earth remains

I’ve become more conscious of these four facts and how it relates to our life experiences.  It occurred to me that these are spiritual events that take place in life. Most of us accept these events as just being physical events. Even through global warming, wars, damaging storms, life and death, and disobedient man…the earth remains through it all. It had never crossed my mind that the earth remains when I read or hear so much about the earth being “slowly destroyed.”

Realization Point– What the Lord, Our God formed first is what remains…”the earth”. (Genesis 1) The four things listed above takes place while the sun, wind, and water continue to do its circuitous tasks assigned by God. Why is it so hard for us to do our tasks assigned?

Vanity Point– excessive pride in one’s appearance, qualities, abilities, achievements, etc.; character or quality of being vain; conceit: lack of real value; hollowness; worthlessness: something worthless, trivial, or pointless.

Taking these points into deep spiritual consideration, we should understand what King Solomon was sharing from his life experiences throughout the verses in Ecclesiastes 1.  Take a real look at your life, both physically and spiritually while reading these verses:

The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.

All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.


Did you notice the pattern? The sun, wind, and water works according to God’s will.  It’s a never-ending cycle until God commands it to end. I also noticed according to the KJV, the sun and wind is referred to as being male …“his” and “he”. Never noticed that before?

If one is a believer in Christ Jesus, each day should begin and end with His circuitous presence. Yes we have to work. No, every day will not be hunky dory. No, we do not need to think daily about death. No, we cannot control the weather. Moses, Job, & Elijah can confirm that.

I had to ask myself…Is there anything that I can do over the sun that is done under the sun? No. Why not? I ask myself. Beloved, we have been given dominion only over the earth. (Genesis 1:26) Needless to say it is dominion that has run amuck. Running amuck is vanity and it is something most of the human race excels in doing. As the group Queen use to sing… “another one bites the dust.”

Another important thing to realize is found in verse 15:  That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.

Wow! We can only say, we’re sorry for messing up or putting a bend in things with others and with God. We cannot go back and make anything the way it was. Women cannot go back and enter a child into their womb once it is born deformed or sickly in some way hoping to make the child come out as a healthy child; divorced people cannot go back and change events that took place that caused the divorce; people, in general, cannot go back and relive a moment to change something done or said in the wrong way that affected others. Even in accounting, an accountant has only the power to erase, re-insert some number to make things look good on paper. If you go behind the scenes of accounting, it is then you will find many “crooked” things that could not be made straight by a person trying to go back, back and back to straighten it out. Got it?

Wanting means there is a lack or absence of something and/ or a not measuring up to standards. Let us ask self….Self what is “wanting” in my life? Make your list and talk to self in the mirror a lot. It works. When the day comes that self is face to face with God, will self be tried and found wanting?

To realize what vanity in our lives is, one must reevaluate ones priorities. Those who are believers must align their priorities with God’s will. I know and I don’t know what has come over me this last year and a half, but things and some people I use to consider important are not important at all. I have finally realized that you can’t help with, do for, nor please everyone.

The Lord has allowed me to share His messages in many ways with others these last three years. If not received by others, I’ve learned to keep smiling and shake the dust from my feet as instructed in Matthew 10:14. My mind and heart set has become an “I don’t care” attitude in a good way with the help of the Holy Spirit.

I’ve reached the spiritual phase in realizing the vanity of it all and the time wasted. Solomon’s thinking is right on the mark. We learn from experience. I recall what my pastor had said once “…fish or cut bait.” I’ve learned the art of cutting bait and suggest that others cut bait as well when the fishing is past your season.

Yes, there is some value among all these things that take place in our lives. However, some of us fail to realize that the value increases when God is ever-present in our lives.

Solomon has put forth some serious issues about life in this first chapter. Just as God has a circuitous pattern for the sun, wind, and waters to work on one accord… He also has a circuitous pattern for us to all be on one accord. We backslide and fail to see and do according to His purpose. Even Solomon backslid and failed God…But God’s Grace!

Personal Moment– I’ve always wanted to live in a log cabin on a mountain, writing books, living as God wants me to live helping others in need, getting around on a horse named Pegasus, and live off the land God gives me. I’m sure the Lord will put me there soon enough, because this is something He has not removed from my heart. He knows best. I’ve always had hermit like tendencies.

When I would read Revelation, I would be envious of John being exiled on the Isle of Patmos.  It is said, that God’s people are a peculiar people. (1 Peter 2:9) I share this because I have realized the importance of spending time alone with the Spirit of God to be more attentive of the four things listed above. As King Solomon stated, all is vanity and even wisdom has its limits.

I also want to encourage those here to spend time with the elderly and homebound. They are a forgotten group. If your area has Christmas trees set up in various venues to buy presents for the elderly, please take a name or two from the tree and make the purchases for them.  They do not ask for much at all. Purchasing toiletries, adult diapers, sweaters, and socks will not break your pockets.  Get your church to sponsor a few people. Isn’t that what the church is for, helping others with their needs? I repeat… the value increases when God is ever present in our lives, especially when we are helping others with basic needs.

Please realize that no matter what is going on in life, the “earth remains” and God is in control. May you become inspired to avoid wasting time on worthless things and realize the vanity of it all.


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