In today’s business world, especially in the West, the rat race never ends. People are rushing to work, rushing to get back from work, rushing to do this, to do that, toiling and working long hours, and go to their homes, and the same each day. The attempt to achieve more, work more, earn more, never ends, but so does their level of burn out, and unhappiness.
King Solomon, was somehow also in the ‘rat race’, building and working on endless projects, toiling endlessly, and after he completed all, that he wanted to achieve, he asked himself, was it worthy, or what was the point of all that. He eventually found, by the wisdom which God has granted him to have, that for human beings, it is better for them to enjoy the product of their toiling and working, rather than spend more time, working more, not being able to enjoy, what they have worked for.
Many people today, find that they still are not happy, even after working so, much, earning so much, and having a never ending ‘rat race’ daily.
If we look at what King Solomon says in the book of the Ecclesiastes, chapter 3, and verses 12, 13 and 22, we can see, that what he recommends that people do, which he thinks is better, is that they should enjoy what they are working for, instead of trying to work more, be extremely busy, with all sorts of projects, and never be able to sit down, and enjoy all they are working for. Solomon says that it is actually a gift from God, for a man to stop his work, take time to enjoy what they have worked for. Of course it is.
How can a person enjoy what they have worked for, if they do not have the time to sit down, slow down, and chill out, spending time with friends and family, and thus, being able to enjoy the consequences of their work. That was the design of God, from the very beginning. Even though God placed Adam and Eve, in the garden of Eden, to work in it, they surely had time to sit down and just enjoy that garden, and all it had to offer. I am sure Adam and Eve, did not have overtime, and did not work overtime in the garden of Eden. They surely had a time, to slow down, and enjoy all their work, in that garden.
But today’s lifestyle, of many people, is most work, more toil, and less time for family and friends, less time for leisure activities, and that is not a recipe for happiness, but for blowing out all your fuses, when a person finds, that they just are not happy. They can not be, if they do not enjoy, what they have worked for, just as Solomon says in the Book.
Hard work is good, but God did not create men for work only, but to have time to enjoy the beautiful garden of Eden, and spend time with each other, basically, just to enjoy the fruit of their labour. That is the gift from God. Hard work is necessary, but working yourself to death, was never God’s design or intention, and never will be. There is time for everything, just as the book of Ecclesiastes says, and that applies to time for work and time for living.
There you have it, beautifully explained, in the book of Ecclesiastes, chapter 4, verse 8. That man described in that chapter, is having a lot of work to do, which surely made him rich, and gave him wealth, but he himself realised, that despite of the fact, that he had all that business, and surely a lot of money, he was still not happy. Then he began to ask himself, some good and useful questions, about his life, his work, and what was going on.
If we are not content, with our wealth, that will always be the driving force, to do more, work more, burn out, and yes, earn more, but with no time, to enjoy what we were toiling for. That is why Solomon says that it is not all about how many businesses you have and are doing, and it is not about how much money you have in the bank, but it is also about how much of what you have, are able to sit down and enjoy. So I believe, Solomon somehow at some point, left the ‘rat race’, in order to sit down and enjoy, all those project he was working on, and he recommends that we do the same.