Years ago, there was a popular song that had the words, “I can’t get no satisfaction.” In many ways, it could be the “national anthem” of our own time. People seek satisfaction and fulfillment in so many things and in so many ways. And, invariably, whatever they find doesn’t seem to last.
People often seek satisfaction in things that don’t really satisfy. People seek satisfaction and fulfillment in relationships, in stuff (like cars and houses), in money, and even in drugs. Some even build monuments to themselves. They get wrapped up in causes or crusades, making a name for themselves. The trouble is that the thrill doesn’t seem to last.
How can one find satisfaction? Perhaps the best advice comes from a man who was the richest, the brightest, and the most accomplished man who ever lived, King Solomon. The Book of Ecclesiastes is his autobiography.
Solomon “had everything”; however, at his life’s end, Solomon found himself miserably unhappy. Why is that? He had seemingly lived life to the fullest, indulging every desire he had. He had pursued wisdom and education relentlessly. He did “good deeds.” He engaged in the largest public works program Israel had known, or would ever know. He had amassed great wealth. Despite all that he had amassed for himself, he was profoundly unfulfilled because he had abandoned the God of his father, David. He did what he did not for God’s glory, but for other motives.
At the end of his life, he realized all this. He realized that he had missed the boat! While his life had begun with such promise, his abandonment of God sowed the seeds for the destruction of his dynasty and family as well as the tearing apart of a unified Israel. Reading his autobiography, we see his dejection at having squandered his potential.
Looking back over his wasted life, he offers us advice we ought to heed. What advice does he give?
The conclusion, when all has been heard, is to fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14).
His wise counsel can be reduced to three fundamentals for living a fulfilling life!
Fear God. The Hebrew word for “fear” has to do with “fear” as we know it, as well as a reverential "awe." Spend some time in Psalm 139 to help you contemplate God’s “bigness” so you can appreciate God’s goodness toward you with reverential awe. This will produce a desire to live for Him and understand Him by understanding the Scriptures. We live for and honor those whom we respect. Respect, revere and fear God. Don’t be like Solomon was. Be like Solomon wished he had been!
Keep His Commands. Jesus says in John 14:15, "If you love me then you will keep my commandments." The awe of God leads to a loving devotion and gratefulness that compels us to obey Him. The word "keep" here has the sense of "be attentive to." We are to be attentive to God's will, found in His loving instruction book, the Bible. Therefore, let us dwell upon His word "day and night" and seek to do what is written in it (Joshua 1:8). Loving and loyal obedience is God's expectation of all men! God blesses obedience. Find fulfillment in living a life committed to God in Christ. "Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be satisfied." (Matthew 5:6) Satisfaction comes in obediently seeking to do God’s will, found in God’s word.
Know and remember that God sees all. God will bring every act to judgment, whether good or evil. Certainly, there is a downside, humanly speaking, to this reality—God hates and punishes sin. Simultaneously, however, there is a tremendous upside! While no sin escapes His scrutiny, neither do our attempts to obey and serve Him. He is as quick to bless our attempts to honor Him as He is to chasten us in our disobedience. His is the perfect parent. He does not expect us to be perfect---but He does expect us to strive to try our best, according to His word. As the Bible says, God looks at the heart (1 Samuel 16:7).
Want to find fulfillment and satisfaction? Make pleasing God your priority by making these three fundamentals three daily practices. Let us strive to love Him and serve Him, making the most of the opportunity to bring Him glory and be a blessing others. Remember, Jesus said, “happy are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness for they shall be satisfied (Matthew 5:6).” Do you want to live a soul-satisfied life? It begins with a saving relationship with God in Christ, then revering Him, and trying to do His will (obeying Him).
Posted on Tue, December 8, 2015
by Sam Petitfils