Sunday, December 8, 2013

31 Days to Happiness

31 Days to Happiness by David Jeremiah is a study of Solomon's words in Ecclesiastes. Jeremiah walks readers through Solomon's thoughts and musings from Ecclesiastes 1-12. Jeremiah uses personal stories, biblical stories, and commentary to explain the process Solomon goes through to understand the meaning of life and happiness. Solomon was given the choice of a gift from God, and he asked for wisdom. Because of this, he enjoyed a blessed life, yet as he reached the end, he felt devoid of meaning. He began pondering all of the blessings he had witnessed and all of the tragedies in life to find the true meaning of all it. Jeremiah walks readers through 12 chapters of Solomon's thoughts on vanity. Foe each area of life where Solomon feels there could be meaning, he finds it empty without God. Solomon looks for meaning in his career, justice, government, finances, questions, misery, rebuke, pleasure, humility, wisdom, the little things in life, and leadership. For each of these areas, Jeremiah shows how Solomon examines them and decides each one is nothing but vanity, a short span in life, that is here one day then gone like a vapor. Instead of looking for happiness in these vain pursuits, Jeremiah says Solomon realized true meaning comes from the giver of life, not from aspects of life itself. Instead, people can find happiness by knowing they are living a life for the Lord. He concludes that life is uncertain, but we are to embrace it. Because life is short, we need to enjoy it, and look for the blessings from God. We are to examine life because it is mysterious. Everything comes from God, and the only meaning we can find, must come from living for Him. Jeremiah takes readers through the journey made by Solomon to show the wisdom in his conclusion. The book is easy to read and follow, although if you are looking for a how-to manual, this is not it. Instead, Jeremiah explains Solomon's conclusions and allows the reader to decide how to adapt these ideas for themselves. It is a worthwhile read, although not what I expected based on the title. This is a book one must read carefully and thoughtfully, allowing each chapter to be absorbed and digested. Although the title suggests a monthly reading plan, I think to get the most from this book, one may need to re-read or allow several days per chapter to take it all in. It is not meant to be light reading. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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