The world famous pop singer, Madonna, said in an interview with Dianne Sawyer, that she felt insecure, not happy, and not emotionally safe.
Yet she had achieved it all: fame, wealth, a rich and handsome husband—well, more than one rich and handsome husband. Many, in fact.
The “material girl” had sold millions of records, was featured on the cover of glamorous magazines, was often quoted by admirers, followed by paparazzi, fawned over by hotel staff, and restaurateurs.
Beautiful , brainy, talented, and driven.
In the world of musical entertainment, she had achieved the pinnacle of success.
Who wouldn’t want to be like her?
Yet she didn’t feel “emotionally safe.”
Kind of like the ancient king, Solomon. His success story happened three thousand years ago. But since then, nothing’s changed in the hearts and minds of men and women.
We still wrestle with the same needs and motivations, the same questions about the existence of God…
Why am I here? What is my life all about? How can I find significance? Am I loved and valued?
Perhaps I will find the answers to my deepest questions, and fulfill my greatest needs by…
intellectual pursuits: college degrees, new skills, more letters after my name: JD, MD, PhD, etc.
Maybe my significance is found in building something: a house, a business, a charitable foundation; writing a best seller, building my bank account.
Being popular and sought after? That’s a roller-coaster ride because people have a short attention-span.
Physical feats in sports or warfare, or travel to exotic places? Feels good for a short while.
If not that, then maybe I can dull my senses by engaging in the ultimate sexual experiences?
Why not drown my disillusionment in marijuana, drugs or alcohol?
I’m tired of life. I’ve tried it all. Nothing makes me happy or gives me peace.
We all come to the Solomon conclusion eventually, if we give ourselves time to reflect.
He concluded: “‘Meaningless! Meaningless!,” ‘says the Teacher.’ “‘Everything is meaningless.'” (Ecclesiastes 12: 8)
Certainly, the famous pop singer had recognized the futility of success. I’m not sure, though, that she came to Solomon’s conclusion.
In my own little world of volunteering at the local pregnancy clinic, I have had the opportunity to share this with my clients:
“Nothing makes sense unless we have a true connection—through Christ—with the God who made us. He understands how we are made, because He made us.”
Solomon’s conclusion: “fear God and keep His commandments.”
Holy Cow! that sounds old-fashioned and hell-fire.
But if mankind hasn’t changed, then the Teacher’s words are true and applicable for us today.
Deeply respect and humbly follow the Loving and all-wise God who made you. Listen to Him, and don’t do life your own way. (When has that ever brought you lasting satisfaction, anyway?)
Solomon was right, but it took him a long time to discover this truth.
I hope we come to agree with Solomon’s conclusion while we’re still young.
“Remember your Creator in the days of your youth.” (Ecclesiastes 12:1 NIV Bible)