11 Then I looked on all that my hands had done and the labor I had spent in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after the wind and a feeding on it, and there was no profit under the sun.
Solomon summarized all his attempts at finding life’s meaning as "chasing the wind." We feel the wind as it passes, but we can’t catch hold of it or keep it. In all our accomplishments, even the big ones, our good feelings are only temporary. Security and self-worth are not found in these accomplishments, but far beyond them in the love of God. Think about what you consider worthwhile in your life-where you place your time, energy, and money. Will you one day look back and decide that these, too, were "chasing the wind"?
6 Train up a child in the way he should go [and in keeping with his individual gift or bent], and when he is old he will not depart from it.
I thank You for this new day and all the plans You have before me. Thank You for the learning and experience You provided me yesterday, although it wasn’t the outcome I was hoping for, I was able to get wisdom from it and I praise You for that. Lord give me the wisdom, confidence, and courage to do and to say what is needed. Help me to realize the tone and passion with which I speak so that You may use it and bless it for Your glory. As I go out today, I thank You for helping my body to feel better this morning and for the rest You provide me. Lord, I look to You for wisdom Lord. I look to You for discernment as to what You would have me do next. As I knock, I pray that You will help me to see the right doors and will open them that I may do what You are calling me to do. With all that You have helped me through and over and around, I know that the plans You have for me are good and that with You all things are possible. So Lord, today I hold onto Jeremiah 29:11 and look to You for wisdom and guidance as I walk out my day in Jesus’ name, giving You all the praise, the honor, and the glory, Amen.
1 BLESS (AFFECTIONATELY, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul! O Lord my God, You are very great! You are clothed with honor and majesty–2 [You are the One] Who covers Yourself with light as with a garment, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain or a tent,3 Who lays the beams of the upper room of His abode in the waters [above the firmament], Who makes the clouds His chariot, Who walks on the wings of the wind,4 Who makes winds His messengers, flames of fire His ministers. 5 You laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be moved forever. 6 You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains. 7 At Your rebuke they fled; at the voice of Your thunder they hastened away.8 The mountains rose, the valleys sank down to the place which You appointed for them.9 You have set a boundary [for the waters] which they may not pass over, that they turn not again to deluge the earth.10 He sends forth springs into the valleys; their waters run among the mountains.11 They give drink to every [wild] beast of the field; the wild asses quench their thirst there.12 Beside them the birds of the heavens have their nests; they sing among the branches. 13 He waters the mountains from His upper rooms; the earth is satisfied and abounds with the fruit of His works.14 He causes vegetation to grow for the cattle, and all that the earth produces for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food out of the earth–15 And wine that gladdens the heart of man, to make his face shine more than oil, and bread to support, refresh, and strengthen man’s heart.16 The trees of the Lord are watered abundantly and are filled with sap, the cedars of Lebanon which He has planted,17 Where the birds make their nests; as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.18 The high mountains are for the wild goats; the rocks are a refuge for the conies and badgers.19 [The Lord] appointed the moon for the seasons; the sun knows [the exact time of] its setting.20 You [O Lord] make darkness and it becomes night, in which creeps forth every wild beast of the forest.21 The young lions roar after their prey and seek their food from God.22 When the sun arises, they withdraw themselves and lie down in their dens.23 Man goes forth to his work and remains at his task until evening.24 O Lord, how many and varied are Your works! In wisdom have You made them all; the earth is full of Your riches and Your creatures.25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide, in which are swarms of innumerable creeping things, creatures both small and great.26 There go the ships of the sea, and Leviathan (the sea monster), which You have formed to sport in it.27 These all wait and are dependent upon You, that You may give them their food in due season.28 When You give it to them, they gather it up; You open Your hand, and they are filled with good things.29 When You hide Your face, they are troubled and dismayed; when You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.30 When You send forth Your Spirit and give them breath, they are created, and You replenish the face of the ground.31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His works–32 Who looks on the earth, and it quakes and trembles, Who touches the mountains, and they smoke!33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have any being.34 May my meditation be sweet to Him; as for me, I will rejoice in the Lord.35 Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless (affectionately, gratefully praise) the Lord, O my soul! Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)
1 A FALSE balance and unrighteous dealings are extremely offensive and shamefully sinful to the Lord, but a just weight is His delight. 2 When swelling and pride come, then emptiness and shame come also, but with the humble (those who are lowly, who have been pruned or chiseled by trial, and renounce self) are skillful and godly Wisdom and soundness.3 The integrity of the upright shall guide them, but the willful contrariness and crookedness of the treacherous shall destroy them.4 Riches provide no security in any day of wrath and judgment, but righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) delivers from death. 5 The righteousness of the blameless shall rectify and make plain their way and keep it straight, but the wicked shall fall by their own wickedness.6 The righteousness of the upright [their rectitude in every area and relation] shall deliver them, but the treacherous shall be taken in their own iniquity and greedy desire.7 When the wicked man dies, his hope [for the future] perishes; and the expectation of the godless comes to nothing.8 The [uncompromisingly] righteous is delivered out of trouble, and the wicked gets into it instead.9 With his mouth the godless man destroys his neighbor, but through knowledge and superior discernment shall the righteous be delivered.10 When it goes well with the [uncompromisingly] righteous, the city rejoices, but when the wicked perish, there are shouts of joy.11 By the blessing of the influence of the upright and God’s favor [because of them] the city is exalted, but it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.12 He who belittles and despises his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding keeps silent.13 He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy and faithful in spirit keeps the matter hidden.14 Where no wise guidance is, the people fall, but in the multitude of counselors there is safety.15 He who becomes security for an outsider shall smart for it, but he who hates suretyship is secure [from its penalties].16 A gracious and good woman wins honor [for her husband], and violent men win riches but a woman who hates righteousness is a throne of dishonor for him .17 The merciful, kind, and generous man benefits himself [for his deeds return to bless him], but he who is cruel and callous [to the wants of others] brings on himself retribution.18 The wicked man earns deceitful wages, but he who sows righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation) shall have a sure reward [permanent and satisfying]. 19 He who is steadfast in righteousness (uprightness and right standing with God) attains to life, but he who pursues evil does it to his own death.20 They who are willfully contrary in heart are extremely disgusting and shamefully vile in the eyes of the Lord, but such as are blameless and wholehearted in their ways are His delight!21 Assuredly [I pledge it] the wicked shall not go unpunished, but the multitude of the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall be delivered.22 As a ring of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman who is without discretion.23 The desire of the [consistently] righteous brings only good, but the expectation of the wicked brings wrath.24 There are those who [generously] scatter abroad, and yet increase more; there are those who withhold more than is fitting or what is justly due, but it results only in want.25 The liberal person shall be enriched, and he who waters shall himself be watered. 26 The people curse him who holds back grain [when the public needs it], but a blessing [from God and man] is upon the head of him who sells it.27 He who diligently seeks good seeks [God’s] favor, but he who searches after evil, it shall come upon him.28 He who leans on, trusts in, and is confident in his riches shall fall, but the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall flourish like a green bough.29 He who troubles his own house shall inherit the wind, and the foolish shall be servant to the wise of heart.30 The fruit of the [uncompromisingly] righteous is a tree of life, and he who is wise captures human lives [for God, as a fisher of men–he gathers and receives them for eternity]. 31 Behold, the [uncompromisingly] righteous shall be recompensed on earth; how much more the wicked and the sinner! And if the righteous are barely saved, what will become of the ungodly and wicked?