Posts Tagged ‘Ecclesiastes’

A poem about wanting to be someone else

February 9, 2011 Leave a comment

2-8-11 — Somebody Else

Pink said it very well

When she sang, frustrated

Of her looks

Of her actions

Of Britney Spears.

“I wanna be somebody else.”

When I listen to that song

It’s often as if it’s my voice

On the radio.

I think of my strange accent

That can’t decide between

Kansas, Texas or Michigan.

I think of all the places

–too many to list–

That I’m dying to go.

I think of all the

Impulsive things

That I’m dying to do

And I wonder if I’ll ever

Go or Do.

The hobbies,

Discovered and undiscovered

That may do little more

Than collect dust

In the bored bright blue playground

Of my imagination.

I think my ever

Exponentially increasing

“To do” list

And how it’s like

Sprinting in a swimming pool

Chest-dep in water

Trying to get it all done.

I wanna be somebody else

So I can have

An empty to-do list.

The freedom

To travel

To do

To explore

To learn

To know.


I well know those dreams

Come naturally.

Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes

Man’s duty is to glorify God

And be content in his labor.

Being busy and happy

Is the key

To traveling

To doing

To exploring

To learning.

To knowing

That somebody else

I wanna be

Is really

The godly person that

God knows I’m capable

Of becoming.

Richard Zowie hopes too many Christians won’t be offended at the reference of pop star Pink on his Christian blog. Post comments here or e-mail him at

King Solomon would disagree with Gene Simmons about Hugh Hefner

August 2, 2010 Leave a comment

Every so often, I frequent the letters section of KISS rock star Gene Simmons’ website. At first I did so out of sheer curiosity, but then I became impressed by Simmons’ intellect. He’s one of those in the rock and roll business who hasn’t fried his brain on drugs, alcohol and fast living. His answers to many questions suggest a man who’s capable of deep thoughts. On more than a few occasions, I even agree with his opinions.

In fact, not only have I read his comments about the music industry, his personal life, his thoughts on religion and the differences between men and women, a few times I’ve even sent him questions. Some of them have been posted with his responses.

My most recent question sent to him stemmed from Simmons’ comments regarding 84-year-old Playboy founder and publisher Hugh Hefner, who is trying to regain financial control of his ground-breaking magazine and apparently return it to private ownership.

Simmons, echoing a statement he made a few years ago when blogging about attending a party at the Playboy Mansion, expressed his reverence for “Hef” (Mr. Hefner, I understand, dislikes his first name and prefers the nickname “Hef”). The Israeli-born rocker/businessman said in a recent documentary on Hefner: “Show me any guy, of any age, anywhere in the world, at any time in history, today or tomorrow, that wouldn’t give his left [testicle] to be Hugh Hefner.”

Yoo-hoo, Gene! Over here!

<Richard waves both his hands and tries to get Simmons’ attention>

Simmons and Hefner are more than entitled to do as they wish with their lives, and as long as their actions are with other consenting adults, I prefer to stay out of it.

That being said, with all due respect, Mr. Simmons, speak for yourself. I get the feeling an ancient Hebrew king might say the same thing.

Besides, about 2,900 years before there was ever a Hugh M. Hefner, there was a Hebrew king named Solomon. Reading through First Kings and Second Chronicles indicates that Solomon could’ve easily schooled Hefner on women: Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines. We can only imagine the other sex partners he had whenever he went to a party and had his selection of any woman he wanted.

I wonder if Solomon would’ve given his left testicle to be Hefner. It’s a pointless question, because Solomon not only was Hefner, but he no doubt was bigger than Hefner. When you read about Solomon and his downfall, you get the strong feeling his appetite for women was absolutely insatiable. In fact, he was probably the guy Hefner would’ve aspired to be.

This is funny, of course, because Ecclesiastes is a book where Solomon looks back on his life of money, sex, power, fame, sex, wisdom, knowledge and sex and utters this in verse two:

“Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.”


“Everything is meaningless,” says the Teacher, “completely meaningless!”

In other words, Solomon–the Original Hugh Hefner with his bottomless harem of wives, concubines and one-night stands–had every man’s ultimate sexual fantasy.

And Solomon couldn’t have been more miserable.

The last thing I want to do is use this blog as a soapbox to attack Mr. Hefner and his lifestyle or to attack Simmons for glamorizing it, but I wonder if either is truly happy. If Solomon was miserable in a life where he strayed off his path with God, I suspect these two men are also.

Just my opinion. Feel free to disagree if you wish.

Richard Zowie is a Christian writer, who considers Ecclesiastes to be one of his favorite books of the Bible. Post comments here or drop a line to

What’s your favorite book in the Bible?

For me, it’s Ecclesiastes.

I’ve blogged my way through the book, and in the next few weeks or so I’ll post on this blog what I’ve written.

Quite simply, it’s an Old Testament book about a king named Solomon who had everything he could possibly want in life (money, power, fame, women, knowledge, wisdom and women) and was still completely miserable. In short, it’s a late-life observation of Solomon’s life, the mistakes he made, the things he did and his ultimate conclusion that true contentment and happiness comes from God. We cannot fill the God void with money, fame, sex, knowledge and power and then wonder why we have no peace.

Solomon makes this observation: there is nothing better in life than to work, be content and honor God.

The same rings true for a 21st century Christian, doesn’t it?

Of course, I also like Revelation and other books.

Tell me, Christian Reader, what your favorite book of the Bible is. I’d love to read your thoughts.

Richard Zowie, a 1995 graduate of Pensacola Christian College and a Christian since 1981, remains a humble student of God. Post comments here or e-mail Richard at

Perhaps Tiger Woods should read Ecclesiastes

December 5, 2009 Leave a comment

There is indeed nothing new under the sun, as Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes.

Tiger Woods is a world-class golfer, arguably the best to ever play the game. He makes millions of dollars a year from golf salary and endorsements. He has a beautiful, Swedish wife and two kids. Millions look up to him.

It’s hard to imagine that someone like that would cheat on his wife.

The exact details are none of my business, but I have to wonder if Woods is learning what Solomon learned around 3,000 years ago: a life where you have everything you could possibly want, apart from a relationship with God, will leave you absolutely miserable.

Solomon had knowledge, wisdom, wealth, fame, and all the women he could possibly want. What did he say about it? “All is vanity.”

The one thing money can’t buy

“Weird Al” Yankovic, in his song “This is the Life”, says this about money: if money can’t buy happiness, then he guesses he’ll have to rent it.

Among other famous people, I’m reminded of the late rapper The Notorious B.I.G., who recorded a song “Mo Money Mo Problems”. Then there was Shaquille O’Neal, who won three NBA titles with the Los Angeles Lakers and just recently was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers. In a 2002 Sports Illustrated interview, O’Neal talked about the stress he deals with, how he’s moody, hates talking on the phone, has a lot of problems and how he has one man watching his money and some other people who watch him. In the midst of this, O’Neal was making more than $10 million a year. O’Neal told the magazine he received phone calls every so often from former teammates, whom he didn’t even know, asking him for money.

Years ago, a minister at my church spoke of a friend who did maintenance work for many celebrities of yesteryear, among them an early icon on television. The friend spent time around them and said he was amazed how unhappy they were despite their vast wealth.

I am reminded of Solomon’s book Ecclesiastes. The Israelite king writes of how he had all the possessions, knowledge, wisdom, knowledge and women he could possibly want, but yet he was completely miserable.

Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 1: “Vanity of vanities…all is vanity.”

In other words, the ultimate emptiness was realizing that all his wealth, possessions, wisdom and knowledge and countless sex partners left him empty.

Even now, as money is very tight for our family and I don’t know what tomorrow will bring in terms of finding employment and paying bills and providing for my family. But I do know if the Lord ever blesses me with finances, the best thing is to have a budget, be content with what you have and ask the Lord to provide ways for you to be a blessing to others who are needy.

And to remember: the money you have is not your money. It’s the Lord’s money, and it’s on loan to you. Be a good steward and seek first the kingdom of God.