So I perceived that there was nothing better for human beings but to enjoy what they do because that's what they're allotted in life. Who, really, is able to see what will happen in the future?
Life often challenges us to find a most rare state of being: contentment. How many times in a day, I wonder, do we long for things to be different? We wish traffic was lighter. We wish the grocery clerk would move things along. We get tired of dealing with the pain in our bodies and wish it would all go away. We wish the weather was different. We wish we didn't have to spend our day off cleaning at home. We wish our finances were in better shape. We want to eat out, instead of eating in --- and on it goes. It's not wrong to wish for something more or something new, but if it consumes us and discontentment is all we know, that could be a problem.
Solomon saw this and speaks to the matter in Ecclesiastes. He sits and ponders humanity and creation, things that are meaningless and things that have value, and shares his wisdom with us. In this passage, he really reflects on our mortality: we live this one life, die and return to dust. Kind of morbid, yet realistic. Later in his writing, Solomon arrives at the conclusion that one should learn to be content with the life they have because this is your one life. It’s a good message for us: find ways to enjoy life.
Maybe you can change things; some things in life certainly need to be changed. Other times we would be less frustrated with life if we took more time for rest and renewal. But for most of the things in our lives, we really just need to learn how to find contentment. This is something I believe God can do for us. Paul says in Philippians 4:11 that he has mastered contentment. He has experienced having much and having little. He has been in great pain but also in comfort, hungry and also well fed, in jail and shipwrecked and more. But his joy is in God and His constant presence and provision. Paul finishes his thought by saying "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:13).
For most things in life we have to learn to find peace and contentment where we are and bloom where we are planted. Find comfort in knowing that God can help you find contentment. It starts by asking for help and asking for new eyes to see things differently; it starts in prayer.
Know that regardless of your circumstances, you are not alone. God is with you.
Awesome God, there is no God but you. Holy is your name. Help us to stay the course. Help us to be faithful to you. Guide our paths and help us to find contentment in all circumstances. Give us Your joy!
Keep the Faith,