For some reason, during this season of social distancing and remaining at home, I have been drawn to study the book of EcclesiastesIt’s unlike any other book of the Bible I have studied, and while I am just a few weeks into the study, there seems to be a theme that jumps out to me with every reading: be content, enjoy the life-path given to me, and God is in control of all.  

     Upon the onset of the chaos COVID-19 brought, I had to work out my faith and overcome some fear I allowed to have a brief hold on me.  By the grace of God, and with His help, that fear has been wrestled down, and I have found great comfort in the matter-of-fact style of King Solomon’s writing found in Ecclesiastes. 

God is in control of all.  Do not worry. Enjoy the life He has given you.  For, in the end, my life is just a breath, here one moment, gone the next.  

It’s a bit freeing, isn’t it?  

     Okay, so back to the marriage part, I love what Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 9:9.  I also loved how J. H. Eaton, an old testament scholar, explained the passage, which I will summarize next to each part of the verse.  The thoughts from my quiet time this morning follow each description, these are not of Eaton.  

In Ecclesiastes 9:9, King Solomon gives us four components of marriage.  

Here’s the text:

“Enjoy life with the woman (spouse) whom you love all the days of your fleeting life which He has given to you under the sun; for this is your reward in life and in your toil in which you have labored under the sun.”          (word substitution mine)

Breaking down the verse—-

“Enjoy”:  this is an active quest for enjoyment

     Notice is it an active quest, not a passive one.  This is something that may not come easy; it may take time to massage, develop.  It could be something as complex as learning a new skill to do together, or as simple as learning how to be able to breathe in the same space.  

“whom you love”:  giving of affection

     The intimacy between a husband and wife is one of God’s many gifts to us, and it is something to be acted upon, an action.  Affection must be given, and received. Love is an action verb.

“all the days”:  life-long

     All.  The. Days.  Not some of the days, or part of the days, but all of the days.  Hitched for life.

“in your toil in which you have labored”:  amid the responsibilities and duties of life

     The actions above take place alongside our day-to-day activities.  One does not supersede the other. It is a both/and, not an either/or.

     Notice also the text says that doing these things in our marriages is our reward in life!  Dividends, y’all! It will pay off, making life more rich, more enjoyable!  

Lord, thank you for this time to slow down a bit, to study Your Word more deeply, to focus on what You will for each of my days.  God, thank You for Brandon! Thank You for gifting me with such an amazing husband and father who loves our family so deeply. Thank You that he is such a joy and a bright spot in my day.  Father, I pray that Brandon and I, through Your perfect love for us, will enjoy life with each other, whom we love all the days of our fleeting lives, which You have given us under the sun.  Thank You that this is our reward in life and in our toil in which we have labored under the sun. It is only through Your great grace, mercy and love that our marriage will stand through the trials of life.  Help me to serve my husband in the manner which brings You glory. Please use our marriage to bring You all the praise and worship, of which, You are so deserving. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

May 1999, our wedding day.