Much To-Do About Nothing.

Solomon was the richest man in the land.  This, according to Ecclesiastes 2, is a list of his possessions:  Houses, vineyards, gardens, parks, slaves, herds, flocks, silver, gold, singers, and concubines.

He really had it all.  He said, “…whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them.  I kept my heart from no pleasure.”

I had the unusual experience in my career to work for a man who was very “Solomonesque”.  He was a member of the Young Presidents Organization.  (A group of CEO’s with above a certain number of employees and above a certain minimum gross annual sales.  To be a member, you had to achieve all of this before the age of 45.)

He was an impressive fellow, tall and handsome, with all of the trappings of the elite.  Once, when I was a guest in his home, he told me about some of the trim in the house.  The bar was from an actual bar in Ireland.  It was disassembled, shipped to the US, and re-assembled in his home.  Not exactly Ikea.  The woodwork was from a castle somewhere in Europe.  The marble floors…imported from Italy.  Even the grass was a special type not usually found in that part of the country.

He traveled in a corporate jet with his initials on the tail.  On route in the jet, the fare was filet minion, lobster and Dom Perignon. He made his own schedule, never hampered by waiting for a commercial air liner. He drove up to the airplane in his Mercedes, an employee appeared to load the luggage into the plane, and away he went.  

He drove German and Italian cars not even available in the US at that time. 

He dined at the best restaurants and was greeted by name. 

I must confess, I was a bit envious but felt I was on track to achieve the same…And then it happened.  His wife caught him in an affair and divorced him.  And it occurred to me that he couldn’t be happy with all the possessions and all of the privilege and all of the power.  He was ever on the search for more.

But as I looked at everything I had worked so hard to accomplish, it was all so meaningless—like chasing the wind. There was nothing really worthwhile anywhere.
— Ecclesiastes 2:11

I never became a CEO, never owned a private jet, never lived in a 10,000 square foot house.  But God has blessed me with contentment beyond that ever achieved by the rich young CEO. 

Lord, help me to appreciate that things that really matter.  That you that you searched and found me and that I accepted your call.  Thank you for the assurance of an eternity with you.  Help me to be a beacon my lost family members and friends that they might find what I have found…peace.

Bill Pryor