Ecclesiastes 1:17, 18
And I set my mind to know wisdom and to know madness and folly; I realized that this also is striving after the wind. Because in much wisdom there is much grief, and increasing knowledge results in increasing pain.
Ecclesiastes 1:17, 18 is a passage that reiterates verse 13 of the same chapter (yesterday’s devotion). This is a common literary device used by biblical authors to bring attention to the main point of that which they have written. The idea that your search for wisdom and knowledge will lead to infliction, grief and pain is emphasized at both the beginning and the ending of Solomon’s paragraph. It would seem that he is trying to say, “If you don’t get anything else I am telling you, know that much wisdom brings much grief, and increasing knowledge results in increasing pain!”
If you are a believer, you have been blessed with a hope and a future that those without Jesus do not have. At the end of the day, after you have come up empty handed in your search for answers to hard questions, you have the peace of Jesus Christ inside of you. This is a privilege known only to believers. It is important that you remember this when one of your unbelieving friends come to you for counsel in their grief and pain. You must remember that the Lord has not brought them to you so that they may learn from your knowledge or wisdom (trust me… this would only increase their grief and pain). The Lord has brought them to you so that you may point them to Him.
Chances are good that you have a friend who is hurting today. He or she is undoubtedly searching for answers from the world around them. They look for wisdom in magazines, school counselors, on the internet, and from “professionals” in the field. You must stand up for your friend today. You must point them to Jesus, the “Wonderful Counselor.” It is only in Him that you or I, or anyone else will find anything other than grief and pain. Apart from the wisdom, the knowledge, and the direction of Him who created us, all other answers are meaningless and all other wisdom will only lead to greater discomfort in the midst of life’s trials.