Reflections: Wednesday of the Week of Holy Trinity

May 29, 2024

Today’s Reading: Ecclesiastes 6:1-7:10

Daily Lectionary: Ecclesiastes 6:1-7:10, John 8:21-38

All the toil of man is for his mouth, yet his appetite is not satisfied. For what advantage has the wise man over the fool? And what does the poor man have who knows how to conduct himself before the living? Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the appetite: this also is vanity and a striving after wind. (Ecclesiastes 6:7–9)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. How satisfied are you? Do you ever get that question, besides in emails about something you just bought? Do you ever think about how satisfied you are with life? Ecclesiastes can certainly paint a pretty grim picture of life. The first chapter of Ecclesiastes tells us that “Vanity of vanities! All is vanity!” (Ecclesiastes 1:2) The preacher (frequently cited as Solomon) goes on to say that all things in life are “striving after wind.” 

Have you ever felt that way? I know I sure have. Sometimes, you do something, and none of it seems to matter. Nothing you do seems to go anywhere; nobody appreciates it, and you might as well have done nothing. At least you could have slept in that day and felt a little less tired. It’s all striving after the wind, right? 

What Ecclesiastes paints for us is the unfortunate reality of life apart from God. Nothing matters apart from God. If the soul does not have God, it cannot be content. All someone can do is just toil and hope to fill their belly. 

But the one who has God, the one who has their sins forgiven, can look forward. Rather than looking at life as being trapped on a rock hurtling through space, waiting your turn to die, you can view it as a blessed opportunity to serve and love your neighbor. And even death, that old foe, takes on a different tone. No longer is death simply the grisly end, but since the grave has lost its sting in Christ, the one who falls asleep in Jesus may look forward to the Ressurection of the Dead, to the new and perfect creation. Striving after the wind? No thanks; we are striving after something far better. We have been given something far better. We have been given the forgiveness of sins. We have been given The Sacraments. You’ve been covered with the water of Holy Baptism. You have been given peace with God. No need to strive at all. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Now through His Son doth shine  The Father’s grace divine.  Death was reigning o’er us
Through sin and vanity  Till He opened for us  A bright eternity. May we praise Him there!   May we praise Him there! (LSB 386:3)

-Pastor Jonathan Lackey is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Vine Grove, Ky.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Jonathan Lackey is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Vine Grove, Ky.

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