The great King Solomon proclaimed these words as he penned Ecclesiastes near the end of his life. Having given into many whims, desires, and temptations throughout his life, the king declared with certainty that all was meaningless. That ever worldly desire left him empty.
Solomon didn't start out wayward. He was born to godly parents--although they made their own fair share of mistakes--and raised in a home that nurtured his future. He was made King over Israel and had everything he could ever want, including a godly wife and God's great task to build the temple. In 1 Kings 3 his greatest prayer is for wisdom, which God answers more than he could have hoped for. Not only does Solomon become the wisest man to ever live, but God blesses him with riches and honor for his heart's pure desire.
Solomon started off strong but he let temptation get a firm hold on his life. Solomon ended up pursuing so many of the world's offerings. I really encourage you to take time today and this week to read the book of Ecclesiastes because it will give you a pretty good idea of all that he pursued; he goes so far as to say that he denied himself nothing his eyes desired. He satisfied his lust for women; having hundreds of wives and concubines. He amassed great wealth and property which he delighted himself in. Solomon denied himself of nothing; he had everything he thought he could ever want, but it came with a price.
Sin creates distance between us and God; not because He loves us any less but because sin breaks His heart. It makes us less like Him and more like the Deceiver. As Solomon reflects on the way he lived his life he makes a plea for people to follow God in their youth. Reading Ecclesiastes I just know that Solomon wished he could have done it all differently. I wish I could. I wish I would have remained true in my darkest hours instead of trying the world's idea of healing. Wishing you could have done things differently in the past gives one a resolution to be faithful in future storms; knowing that God will ALWAYS come through and you'll never regret staying true to Him.
You might be dabbling with some of the things of this world. Perhaps you're heading into a trial and your first, second, or third instinct may be to seek comfort in this world. If this is you, flee from temptation. Learn from the mistakes of the wisest person who ever lived. Resolve to embrace that the things of this world pale in comparison to our beautiful God and that everything is meaningless outside of God. No desire, accumulation of wealth, advancement, or person will fill the aches you might feel in your soul. Only God can reach those places and love you the way you long to be loved.
- What temptation are you struggling with today? How can you flee from it?