According to Solomon, who is likely the wisest, richest and most powerful man recorded in the history of the world, obedience to God is the most satisfying way to live. He was more qualified than most on the subject of satisfaction and therefore, possessed a unique perspective from which to conclude that everything done apart from God is vanity. He HAD it all and TRIED it all. At the end of his life he wrote Ecclesiastes and detailed many of the things he tried in order to satiate his desires. He DID everything and anything he wanted. He HAD everything and anything he wanted. He WAS the MOST powerful person on earth. What did the man who had it ALL conclude? He concluded many things–like–a content life is a precious gift from God and life apart from God is vanity (Eccl. 2:24-26); all the things we work so hard to possess will someday belong to someone else (2:18-19); that death and tragedy come to both the wise and foolish (2:15-16); striving for wisdom is pointless apart from God (12:12); etc. His advice–after he’d had EVERY possible good thing the world could offer and NOTHING satisfied him–was: “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments…” (12:13a) What’s amazing and exciting about this conclusion from one who already had and experienced EVERYTHING we strive for—is–that it gives hope to EVERYONE. Most of us will never be as rich, powerful or wise as Solomon—and we don’t NEED to be in order to possess supreme satisfaction because ANYONE can have a relationship with God! We needn’t strive to obtain what Solomon had and concluded didn’t satisfy. Rather, we should strive for what he said matters…a relationship with God. “Fearing God” isn’t being afraid of God—it’s respecting Him because of Who He IS–to the extent that we entrust our entire life to Him. We entrust our long-term goals and our daily activities to Him and we also free ourselves from the sins which shroud His glory, power, wisdom, love and blessings in our life. We talk with Him because we WANT to know Him and His will. When we know Him, we WANT to obey Him because He is the best part of who we are and HE satisfies us!