Rejoice, O young man, while you are young
and let your heart be glad in the days of your youth.
Follow the ways of your heart,
the vision of your eyes;
Yet understand that as regards all this
God will bring you to judgment.
Ward off grief from your heart
and put away trouble from your presence,
though the dawn of youth is fleeting.
Remember your Creator in the days of your youth,
before the evil days come
And the years approach of which you will say,
I have no pleasure in them;
Before the sun is darkened,
and the light, and the moon, and the stars,
while the clouds return after the rain;
When the guardians of the house tremble,
and the strong men are bent,
And the grinders are idle because they are few,
and they who look through the windows grow blind;
When the doors to the street are shut,
and the sound of the mill is low;
When one waits for the chirp of a bird,
but all the daughters of song are suppressed;
And one fears heights,
and perils in the street;
When the almond tree blooms,
and the locust grows sluggish
and the caper berry is without effect,
Because man goes to his lasting home,
and mourners go about the streets;
Before the silver cord is snapped
and the golden bowl is broken,
And the pitcher is shattered at the spring,
and the broken pulley falls into the well,
And the dust returns to the earth as it once was,
and the life breath returns to God who gave it.
Vanity of vanities, says Qoheleth,
all things are vanity!
— ECCL 11:9-12:8
The peace of the Lord be with you. Once again the Old Testament reading reminds us of the stages of life. It particularly tells us to enjoy the days of our youth as these days will pass by quickly.
The days of our youth are days in which we are formed and made ready for the work which lays ahead of us. Some of these days will be glorious and others will be challenging allowing us to grow in new ways. This process is not only true for people, but also for communities and societies.
Throughout this process, it is important that we remember those things that are timeless and eternal. At the foundation of youth and all other stages, is the love of God who as the text above says makes our lasting home.
Today may we blessed to see the glory of God shining in the world through the various stages of life and making us ready for the life to come. In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.