Spiritual Formation Exercise 4 - Ecclesiastes 1:1-18

Spiritual Formation Exercise

Your passage this week claims that "all is vanity." As you read through and meditate on the first chapter of Ecclesiasties, consider the contrast between this passage and Proverbs 9 from your spiritual formation exercise in week 2. Reflect on why it is both can be inspired of God but also seem so different. Why does it seem like Proverbs 9 offers such reward for being wise while Ecclesiastes 1:17 hints that even this is vanity? As you consider this passage, think about to what extent your resonate more with Ecclesiastes 1 or Proverbs 9. Consider how each passage affects you. Which one seems more instructive? Which one forces you to reflect, ponder and question? What is the value of each?

Journal Reflection

Read through your observations and spend about 30 minutes reflecting upon the value of reflective wisdom. Submit this as a Word document in the assignment dropbox by Sunday evening.  As you reflect, consider these topics:

1) What value does the reflective wisdom contained in Ecclesiastes 1 have for your daily life?

2) To what extent did you resolve the apparent tension between Ecclesiastes 1 and Proverbs 9? How do you see them working together?

3) What value can Ecclesiastes find in wisdom? How can we get beyond "striving after wind?"

4) How can the message of Ecclesiastes help you minister to those who may be struggling with finding meaning in their life?

Journal for thirty minutes. Submit your journal (Word document) to the assignment drop box by the due date.