The walls fall down.

In time, everything on earth will come to an end.

Last night I checked off another of my 43 Things. Five of us gathered at my house for the first night of the men’s Bible study I started up. Three more are supposed to be there next week. We’re studying “A Life Well Lived” by Tommy Nelson, an in-depth study of the book of Ecclesiastes. Ecclesiastes isn’t your “typical” Bible book. It spends most of it’s words talking about the trials and futility of life, not about the virtues of God. One of the things Solomon writes about is how he worked hard and built great things but in the end it all came crumbling down and was forgotten.

I increased my achievements. I built houses and planted vineyards for myself. I made gardens and parks for myself and planted every kind of fruit tree in them. I constructed reservoirs of water for myself from which to irrigate a grove of flourishing trees. I acquired male and female servants and had slaves who were born in my house. I also owned many herds of cattle and flocks, more than all who were before me in Jerusalem. I also amassed silver and gold for myself, and the treasure of kings and provinces. I gathered male and female singers for myself, and many concubines, the delights of men. Thus, I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem; my wisdom also remained with me. All that my eyes desired, I did not deny them. I did not refuse myself any pleasure, for I took pleasure in all my struggles. This was my reward for all my struggles. When I considered all that I had accomplished and what I had labored to achieve, I found everything to be futile and a pursuit of the wind. There was nothing to be gained under the sun. Ecclesiastes 2:4-11 (MSG)

I know just how he feels. I poured myself into 7 years of marriage only to have it come to tragic end. I worked hard the last five years on building the complicated systems and trusted relationships here at work only to have my associates pressured into moving or leaving the company, and to see the systems which I built and maintained be handed off to others who have demolished them. Solomon did a lot of good things in his life and also made a lot of mistakes in his life. Yet only the things he did for God have stood the test of time.

A Life Well Lived