Summary: WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN LIFE? THE WISEST MAN WHO EVER LIVED CAN EXPLAIN IT TO US.
LIFE IN THE FAST LANE
TEXT- ECCLESIASTES, CHAPTER 1&2
Believe it or not we are all in search of either happiness or fulfillment in life. If we look around us and see what is really going on, we’ll see some facts emerge that perhaps many people haven’t considered. I believe the answer can be found in the things read and watched each day. We see it in our literature and the culture we live in.
· I see a culture that is attempting to define human existence.
· I see a culture that asks, “Does my life have any meaning?”
· I see a culture afraid to ask the tough questions about life.
· I see a culture that is afraid of “nothingness”.
· I see a culture that is afraid to be honest about itself.
· I see a culture that desperately needs answers to the really tough questions of, “What is true happiness?”, and “What is the purpose of life?”
When we read Chapter 2 of the Book of Ecclesiastes, we find King Solomon searched for those same answers generations ago. He was wise, he was rich, and he had plenty of time on his hands. This yearning for purpose is nothing new. Even in the ancient times people realized that something was missing in their lives.
This problem is what led the Greeks to write the mythological tale of Sisyphus. As the story goes, Sisyphus was punished for giving life secrets to mere mortal men. His punishment for his crime was to roll a massive stone to the top of a hill, watch it roll down and then push it back up the hill and watch it roll down again. He repeated this exercise over and over again. His life was a life consigned to meaningless FUTILITY.
How many times have people thought, or felt, like this described their life. A National Survey ask a question of many people, and it ask if you were given the right to ask GOD one question and you knew that you would receive an answer, what would it be? The results was that 4 of the top 5 questions would relate to the meaning or purpose of life. Even in the 21st century we still hunger for a meaningful LIFE.
Now, I don’t know how many of you have seen the movie called Forrest Gump, but I would imagine that most of you have. Even if you are one that hasn’t, I think you will get the meaning. If Forrest Gump’s Mother , she would answer that question by saying, “Life is like a box of Chocolate.”
See, you never know what you are going to get. Many of us would agree, because life can be SWEET like chocolate. It can also get STICKY like chocolate. Sometimes we would say that it has a lot of NUTS like chocolate!
Oh! By the way, there is a website that will help you look for the meaning of life. If you access it, it will ask you to click here for the meaning of life. When you click there will be another screen that pops up that says the meaning of life. When you click on it, it recycles again once more ands ays, “This will LINK you to the meaning of life.” When you click there it sends you back to the original screen, which says, and you’ve got it don’t you, it says, “click here for the Meaning of life.” We end up in some sort of cyber-circle. Well to some that is what life is like: a meaningless and endless cycle that seems to take us nowhere.
We keep trying to find purpose. In fact, if we follow that great internet highway to fulfillment we might try shopping, parting, and pursuing pleasure as the answer.
Unfortunately, like a box of chocolates from Forrest Gump, we find pleasure tastes good for a moment BUT ultimately it melts away. Others seek excitement for purpose and so they become adrenaline junkies, always looking for the next HIGH, but thanks to the law of diminishing returns, these people are never satisfied.
Some pursue purpose through success in some area. They pure themselves into careers and get all kinds of positive reinforcement and that sparks a cycle of working harder and harder…for more stuff. But true fulfillment-Lasting fulfillment-always seems just past their grasp.
A few years ago, Life Magazine published an entire book on how individuals have coped with this for purpose. They interviewed people from all walks of life….from philosophers to drug addicts…from painters to plumbers to cab drivers.
I love the comments of a New York Cab driver named Jose Martinez. He said , “We are here to die..just live and die. I live driving a cab, and I do some fishing, take my girl out, pay my taxes, do a little reading, then a few decades later, I get ready to drop dead. Life is a fake! You’re rich or you’re poor. You here, you’re gone. You are like the wind. Life is nothing!”