Last time I talked about “Everything Being Meaningless” and concluded with this thought.
“Everything I’m striving for or wishing for or envious of is meaningless. Everything outside of Him (God) is meaningless. And I should keep my eye on Him, on pleasing Him.”
Which led me to the question I’m going to explore today. Is it possible to please God?
I started reading where I let off last time: Ecclesiastes 3
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.
What does the worker gain from his toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live. That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil–this is the gift of God.
So I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to enjoy his work, because that is his lot. For who can bring him to see what will happen after him… So I saw that there is nothing better for a man than to enjoy his work, because that is his lot. For who can bring him to see what will happen after him?”
Starting to hear something now, Lord. Find satisfaction in toil. Enjoy my work. No grumbling and complaining. That would please God, right?
Meaningless, meaningless, meaningless. Riches are meaningless. Advancement is meaningless. [Sign of relief] I learned that lesson a year or so ago when I finally handed over my writing career to the Lord. But wait, maybe there’s other areas of my life that I need to examine in this area. [Deep breath as I dive back under]
Stand in awe of God. [Pause]
“Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know that they do wrong. Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few…”
How many times have I sat before the Lord, growing impatient when I couldn’t hear his voice in the first five minutes? Too many times to count. Or how many times have I come with my problems and concerns, quick with my mouth, hasty in my heart, with too many words. Often.
Do not let your mouth lead you into sin. And do not protest to the [temple] messenger, “My vow was a mistake.” Why should God be angry at what you say and destroy the work of your hands? Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore stand in awe of God. (Ecclesiastes 5:1-7)
Stand in awe of God and let my words be few. So simple. Then why don’t I do it more often?
I’m starting a devotion book called “31 Days of Praise” by Ruth Myers. It’s all about praising God in the good and bad. Maybe that’s the next step God is calling me to. Maybe that’s how I can please God.
How about you? Is it impossible to please God? What have you learned in your journey?