I have observed something else under the sun. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time.
Ecclesiasties 9:11 NLT
Time and chance happen to everyone.
Bad crap happens. Dangers are a part of everyday life. And it’s just the way that it is. See Ecc. 11:3.
Today’s analogies would be:
Whoever drives a car may be hit by oncoming traffic; whoever retreats safely inside may fall down the steps. Whoever uses electricity may be electrocuted; and whoever cooks on a stove top may get burned.
Dangers are a part of life and it’s just the way it is. Bad things happen. Accidents happen. The baby pulls the pot of boiling water off the stove. The electric plug had too much moisture inside, it sparked, and caught on the house on fire.
However, skill, wisdom, and understanding can bring profit and success in the midst of danger lurking around the corner (Ecc 10:10). But even with skill, timing and chance is everything. If you’re too slow, your toast (Ecc. 10:11).
But, it’s not always the first to win. It’s not always the early bird gets the worm. Sometimes the late mouse gets the cheese. It’s all back to time and chance (Ecc. 9:11).
Sometimes things just happen and they are what they are (Ecc. 10:3). And if you keep looking and waiting for the perfect time, you’ll miss out (Ecc. 10:4). There is no perfect time that we can determine, it is outside of our knowledge. Only God in his infinite wisdom and control time and chance (Ecc. 10:5).
Therefore, don’t assume because you wake up early and work first that you’ll be successful because “that’s what successful people do.” God is not a blessing machine nor a magic genie. He cannot be manipulated because things are supposed to work a certain way. The reality is, we don’t know what will happen (Ecc. 9:12; 10:14; 11:6). That being said, make sure if you get up early and work, don’t veg in front of the TV later. Make sure you’re working hard in more than one way. Because you do not know if your first job will always be there. And your side hustle or 2nd job may become more successful than you had ever thought possible.
In conclusion, everything is here today and gone tomorrow. Death comes equally to us all, and it is one thing of which you can be sure (Ecc. 9:1-3; 12:7). So, enjoy life before you die (Ecc. 9:7-10; 12:1-7). And above all, obey God because He is God (Ecc. 12:13). Do not obey God because He can provide blessing. Do not obey God because of His protection.