As the new year approaches, we begin to think about our lives. What have we accomplished in the last year and where are we heading? People begin to make a list of resolutions and start to think of ways to improve themselves and become a more well rounded and happier person. The list begins with trying to quit things like smoking and overeating and ends with trying to accomplish more like joining a gym and earning that degree.
There is a man who loves sports to the point of making it his profession. He has lived and breathed sports most of his life. As he gets older, the reality of not being young forever has hit him smack dab between the eyes. How long will his body be able to continue with the stress of playing; what will he do once he can no longer perform? As he looks back on his life full of joy and hard work, he begins to wonder where his happiness will lie once his career ends.
In the second chapter of Ecclesiastes, Solomon goes on a quest to find happiness. First he tried to just "have fun", but he soon realized that it alone was "useless" and "foolish". Next he tried to focus on working hard, but soon found that it alone was like "chasing the wind". Next he thought if he truly had wisdom, that would give him true happiness. But,through it all, he came to the conclusion that both a fool and those full of wisdom will all end up in the grave someday. So, he spent his life looking for ways to make himself happy and in the end it says in verse 17, 18, "So I hated life. It made me sad to think that everything here on earth is useless, like chasing the wind. I hated all the things I had worked for here on earth, because I must leave them to someone who will live after me." After trying every avenue to get true happiness, he hit a dead end street, until he began to realize that true happiness comes from God. In verse 25, 26 it says, "because no one can eat or enjoy life without Him. If people please God, God will give them wisdom, knowledge and joy. But sinners will get only the work of gathering and storing wealth that they will have to give to the ones who please God. So all their work is useless, like chasing the wind."
As we glance back at the past and move on to this new year, may we understand that all the fun, hard work and wisdom can hold no joy unless it is given to us by God. All the stuff that we accumulate will be left behind one day. Our new years resolution shouldn't be how much weight we can lose, but how God should hold more weight in our lives. Remember, true happiness comes from God!