Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done
And on the labor in which I had toiled;
And indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind.
There was no profit under the sun.
I remember reading this scripture and thinking how I would love to experience the riches of Solomon. Indeed, most would agree.
Solomon calls it labor so let’s go with that.
A man works very hard his entire life and does well.
He invests or is successful in business and builds a nice house. Perhaps he builds several so he can summer in Montana and winter in Florida.
He has nice vehicles, gets married, starts a family, and provides for their needs.
They travel and vacation all over the world.
It sounds nice. It sounds idyllic.
And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.”‘ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’
“So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” Luke 12:19-21
What you must remember is this life is short and eternity is long. Along the way to eternity are many others less fortunate than you. Yes, you are not on the bottom it all.
To help a fellow human being along the way is better than riches.
Perhaps at this time of year a quote from Dickens’s A Christmas Carol is appropriate. It comes from the ghost of Jacob Marley clad in chains and doomed so. As he stood before Ebenezer Scrooge he said, “Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!”
I will not end with non-scripture. I’ll give you the words of Jesus, Who did not come to seek great riches and take it easy, but “the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10