Unknown. - Ecclesiastes 9:11.
March 21, 2023, 8:25 AM

Living with the Unknown.

Eccl. 9: 11

“I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.”

Solomon started this chapter reminding us that even the wise and the righteous do not know whether love or hate awaits him. Now his observations lead to humbly saying all man's plans and dreams are unpredictable. We try so hard to prepare for the future and to make sense of life by applying certain principles to get blessings, but somehow it just doesn't always work. We can do every thing right and have things turn out wrong, and some can do everything wrong and have things turn out right as far as this world is concerned. Life is more complex than 10 easy principles of this or 7 easy lessons of that. I realize that I too can be guilty of oversimplifying the principles presented.

I went to a seminar on how to understand you wife. Guess what? I applied every principle the teacher gave me and it didn't work. Wives are more complex than a 3-hour seminar. We cannot be self-confident in our achievements. Whatever we have experienced for good is a gift from God. We too often take credit for our works instead of His grace. Difficulties and circumstances keep us dependent on Him.

Injustice has always been a problem for believers. Why do folks who seek to be faithful, suffer? Why do those who seem to have no regard for God seem to have an easy and rich life? Why does the evil prosper? Why do the faithful fall?

There are no pat answers. We need the continual reminder that faith in God is believing and knowing He is in control and He knows best. God has said He will never leave us nor forsake us. Just because you cannot understand all the answers doesn't mean we give up on the One who does know all the answers.

If there is one constant complaint against church people by outsiders it is “self righteousness.” Instead of witnessing compassion and humility there is a perception of people who are holier and more judgmental toward others. There are people who think they have God all figured out. If they say a prayer a certain way or follow a particular path then their wanted results always follow. Solomon says that just isn't so in this life. I feel so small and ignorant when complexities come. I ask "Why Lord, I do not understand?” I find that real Christian maturity isn't being able to answer the questions; it is to trust even in the midst of questions. Sometimes a satisfying answer never comes. As we humbly walk with trust in the Lord, we accept by faith that some things are not for us to understand and are beyond our ability humanly to understand. We will understand it by and by.

Oswald Chambers, said, "God disciplines us by disappointments. Life may have been going on like a torrent, then suddenly down comes a barrier of disappointment, until slowly we learn that the disappointment was His appointment. God hides His treasures in darkness and many a radiant star that was not seen before comes out. In some lives you can see the treasure. There is sweetness and beauty about them, the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit and you wonder where the wisdom power of God came from. It came from the dark places where God revealed His sovereign will in unexpected issues. ‘Thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress.’ the psalmist says. Isn't it in those dark days that we lean most on God?”