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Today’s VerseSo I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that these pleasures are from the hand of God. — Ecclesiastes 2:24 NLT
DevotionSolomon looked everywhere for the meaning of life, but he had a hard time finding it. He tried to find it in wine, women, song, wealth, wisdom, hard work, and a number of other things (Ecclesiastes 2:1-8). Nothing, however, seemed satisfactory. Everything he tried seemed like a meaningless vanity – nothing more than a “chasing after the wind” (Ecclesiastes 2: 11). After trying all these things, one after the other, he realized the meaning of life can only be found in a proper relationship to God. He said, “Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).
When Solomon finally stopped trying to find the meaning of life in the things of the world he discovered something. He discovered the true meaning of these things. They’re simply pleasures that are sent, as our verse for today tells us, “from the hand of God.” When he tried to make them something that they’re not, when he tried to make them the be all and end all of life, they failed to satisfy him. But when he finally realized the true meaning of life can only be found in a proper relationship to God, he found that they could have a meaningful place in his life. He found that they could be something more than just a chasing after wind.
Indeed, he found that they could be pleasures to be enjoyed. When he tried to make these things more than what they really are he fell into despair. He said, “So I came to hate life because everything done here under the sun is so troubling. Everything is meaningless” (Ecclesiastes 2:17). But when he discovered the limited place they have in life, he got happy about them. He went so far as to say that there is “nothing better” than these things – nothing better than food, drink, and finding satisfaction in work. The things of the world can bring great joy when you realize they have a limited place in the great scheme of things.
Today you must go about your daily tasks. You must eat, drink, and do your work. May God grant you the ability to find them meaningful and to derive pleasure from them.