After a couple of weeks, we pick up where Solomon left off. He’s in search for the meaning to life. His next quest for purpose leads him down the road we coin as “PARTYING”. Or, as Ricky Martin would say, “Livin’ La Vida Loca”. Solomon assumed that purpose must be found at the bottom of the bottle or being the life of the party.
He comments in Ecclesiastes 2, “I thought in my heart, ‘Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good’…I tried cheering myself with wine, and embracing folly—my mind still guiding me with wisdom. I wanted to see what was worthwhile for men to do under heaven during the few days of their lives.”
Solomon’s search is a mirror image to our culture today. We attempt to fill the void in or hearts with the PARTY. Millions of people tonight will try to find acceptance from the crowd through booze, drugs, fame, etc. Just today, while watching Lady Gaga arriving at the Grammy’s in an egg, I heard that over 3 million American teens between the ages of 14 and 17 are alcoholics and over 24 million people are addicted to cigarettes. Our culture subliminally preaches that we have to have more, be bigger, out do yesterday, while forgetting that there is a consequence to our actions.
Have you ever experienced the harsh reality of a consequence that far overshadowed the entertainment of getting there?
In 2007, I had the honor of going to Israel with the internationally known Evangelist and Pastor, Steve Hill. As our tilapia dinner at the Sea of Galilee was coming to an end, the waiter brought out dessert: A DATE. Being that this was the first time I had ever had this fruit, I was surprised how good it was. The few dozen people at our table, including Steve Hill’s wife Jeri, began passing me their date for me to eat along with mine. We must have been delirious because we thought that a date was an interesting way to end the meal. I was so caught up in the moment as laughter filled the room I even elbowed the Pastor and commented that I was having a “DATE” with his wife. The atmosphere continued to swell in volume and intensity as I cut jokes and ate the dates. I carried on as I thought they were laughing at my free comedy show. I quickly found out that the laughter was not at the show, but at me!
You see, I didn’t know that dates were natural laxatives. For the next forty-five minutes on the bus ride back to the hotel, I sweated bullets as I prayed to God for grace to make it to the bathroom. The dates were good, but the consequence just wasn’t worth it. And so it was with Solomon.
After all the drinks and partying, he came to the reality that it was just, “a chasing after the wind.” The consequence of his sin just wasn’t worth it. The drinking was fun for a season, but it was far outweighed by the hangovers and guilt. Solomon concluded that like education, partying is not the meaning to life. So he continued his search.
Tags: Shawn Brann