Purpose & Fulfillment
Hey-o! Sapp here coming at you with the blog this week!
Recently I have been studying the book of Ecclesiastes and I have found great interest in it. I enjoy psychology and have been able to connect it with this book. For a little background, Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon.
In 1 Kings 3, God asked Solomon what He could gift him and Solomon requested wisdom and understanding to govern the Lord's people in the best way. Due to Solomon's special request, we see how God fulfills this:
"The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, 'Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for -- both wealth and honor -- so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life'" (1 Kings 3:10-14, NIV).
While reading this, I want you to keep this in mind that Solomon has been gifted the highest earthly wisdom. I hope this post encourages you as we study more into the beginning of Ecclesiastes and I share my great admiration for this book.
Solomon begins Chapter 1 describing how everything in life is vanity or futile, meaning worthless and without purpose. Solomon then dissects and experiments many common human desires throughout the book of Ecclesiastes, testifying how each one only brings unfulfillment.
He talks about the vanity of self-indulgence (2:1-11) and acquires an abundance of earthly treasures, yet still is left feeling without purpose. He even discusses the vanity of wisdom (1:12-18, 2:12-17) when he has been gifted wisdom from God, yet still finds vanity in it. He talks about the vanity of work (2:18-26) and many more areas where we seek purpose. But he realizes all are without fulfillment.
Many people first reading Ecclesiastes may find the book depressing, but there is something I absolutely love about it with Solomon. I view this as Solomon seeking an answer to the question all human beings ask: What is the purpose of life?What is the secret to life? or What is my purpose in the world?
I think this question is brought up in every person's life, whether they decide to blow it off and continue to live aimlessly, or they dig deep to find an answer. And it is so crazy to me that Solomon, who has been gifted all earthly wisdom, still asks this question and is still left unfulfilled.
Then, Chapter 3 comes and Verse 11b says, "He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end" (NIV). Wow. What I love about this is eternity is in every person's heart. It is why we ask those questions and why everything on earth leaves us unsatisfied; because our hearts desire something more.
Both believers and nonbelievers hold this desire. God puts this deep desire in every human being so we will investigate where our purpose and fulfillment is found, like Solomon is doing, and discover it is only found in Jesus Christ.
In Ecclesiastes 2:24-25, it says, "A person can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in their own toil. This too, I see, is from the hand of God, for without him, who can eat or find enjoyment" (NIV)? We can see that anything apart from God is vanity. God wants you to have enjoyment and purpose. He does not want you walking aimlessly or striving after the wind. He desires for us to come to Him and be fulfilled, to walk with purpose in every aspect of life He gifts us.
To my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, are you still walking aimlessly? Are you still seeking purpose in things of this world? Do you feel everything you do is worthless? I want you to ask yourself who you are living for and what you are trying to find fulfillment in? Remember, anything apart from God is vanity. It is worthless. Seek to please God.
Maybe you do not feel this way. Perhaps you have found purpose in Christ and are walking in that every day. But I want to remind you there are so many people out there walking without purpose seeking an answer for the desire of eternity in their hearts. Help them find it.
To any of you readers who have not come to know Christ as your Lord and Savior, have you been asking yourself those questions lately? Have you been experimenting like Solomon, trying to find anything of the world that brings you satisfaction? I want you to know there's so much more being offered to you than what the world offers. God is the only answer to fill that desire in your heart. I hope you connect with someone to receive that answer.