Your Spiritual Life Lesson “Feeling Empty”
Summary for Chapter 2 “Our Relationship with God”
From the Title “ The Secret Place of the Most High … How to Get There”
“So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.”Ecclesiastes 2:17
All Rights Reserved by Rev. Dr. Sheila Walker
The feeling of emptiness is an emotion that can happen to anyone at any age or stage in life; and it can occur more than once. Although we experience emptiness when our careers are interrupted or we fail to reach our goals, relationship fulfillment is the main cause of this emotion.
We do everything we can to develop strong relationships with others because it is essential to human life. Thus, the requirement for relationship fulfillment can cause us to put forth extensive efforts and at times, experience pain when we receive less of it then we feel we deserve. In essence, when your heart feels empty it is a strong indication that there is a problem with a relationship in your life.
Many people try to work through this serious emotion by:
engaging in short term relationships (frequent friendships)
deception thinking (that they’re okay)
appeasing true feelings with acquisition material things (these serve as temporary band aids)
Emptiness is a serious relationship reality that must be dealt with … including Christians. Let’s first start by understanding the emotion of feeling empty from a biblical perspective.
The word “Vanity” is a word used to describe pride, narcissism, self-importance, being conceited or arrogance. However, in the Scriptures, its meaning is related to futility of life or unhappiness. The Scriptures point out specific areas of life and how much we engage ourselves in them to feel fulfilled which unfortunately equates to emptiness. They are pointless because they do not
Working and Career Ecclesiastes 4:8 (American King James Version)
“There is one alone, and there is not a second; yes, he has neither child nor brother: yet is there no end of all his labor; neither is his eye satisfied with riches; neither said he, For whom do I labor, and bereave my soul of good? This is also vanity, yes, it is a sore travail.”
Money Ecclesiastes 6:7 “He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity.”
Acquisition of Things Isaiah 55:2 (New American Standard Bible (©1995)
"Why do you spend money for what is not bread, And your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, And delight yourself in abundance.”
Although it’s true that they do satisfy us and give us a personal sense of pride, they are temporary because they cannot complete us.
King Solomon, the Son of David, mentioned vanity more than 37 times in Ecclesiastes. Unlike his father’s songs of praise and inspiration, Solomon takes a good look at what surrounds life and realizes that the part of him that everyone sees is splendid, his beauty, power, wisdom and riches. It’s what they don’t see (his empty soul) is what he addresses.
Everything that would make a man successful and happy (so you would think) was not enough to fulfill his life. He teaches and sheds light on how one could have everything and yet have nothing, as if it all blows away in the wind.
Ecclesiastes 2:11 “Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.”
Ecclesiastes 2:17 “So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.”
The wise preacher gives a remedy to the problem with this conclusion:
keep His commandments
fulfill your duty, for this is the whole responsibility of man
Simply put, he’s saying that our relationship with God should be our first priority which requires the deepest sincerity of our entire being. This has to be done from deep within us and with every fiber of our “ego” or “self.” We would have to be truthful and confess that somehow we’ve gotten out of touch with our true purpose in life, and that perhaps we’ve neglected our responsibilities as they relate to God, thus causing the feeling of emptiness.