Our verse for today comes from Ecclesiastes 2:11, ” Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun. “
Since it’s mid-November, it’s no surprise that NASCAR is being run at racetracks in the south. There was a time when I had a fair amount of interest in NASCAR. I had a friend in college who went on to play professional football, and he got to know one of the drivers fairly well, and so I began to watch and pull for him. He was young but successful and on his way to a great career, but tragically, he lost his life a couple years later. I continued to watch and have other favorite drivers, but through time and changes in life, my interest faded into what it is today. Not having grown up with a love for racing like I did for football and basketball, the races returned to what they were for me previously, just a bunch of cars going around an oval, using up thousands of gallons of gas and hours and hours of my time. So I don’t spend much time watching races anymore. I still prefer one or two certain guys to win, and hope a couple others don’t, but I will go months without seeing a lap be run or a pileup occur.
Now, when you examine racing up close, there is a lot of technology, science, and knowledge that goes into designing, building, and racing a car. Subtle adjustments and fractional alterations can mean the difference between winning and losing. And many enhancements made to the racecars for safety and efficiency have benefitted drivers like you and me who (supposedly) keep it under 100 mph. But when viewed from slightly higher up, racing looks like some cars going in circles, each one struggling to find the right-hand turn to get home. In a word, vanity. Racing has its place, for people’s livelihoods depend on it. But much in our lives, when viewed from above and up close, doesn’t. Each of us has one or two or a dozen things that accomplish as much as running in circles. We need to let them go. Consider what your hands are doing and all you expend in doing it. There’s probably something else under the sun that’s more important.
As we seek Him today, be sure that what you toil and spin over has as much value in God’s eyes as it has in yours.