“Teach us to number our days right that we may gain wisdom of heart” (ps 90:12)
“Vanity of vanities” Could be a biblical admonition or an ad for bathroom furniture. English has take the term at face value and applied it to large lightef mirrors and cabinets stockef with beauty supplementa. Modern expectations for personal appearance as the key to success fall under that rule that “it is better to look good than to feel good”. Or to be good.
Jesus had nothing aganaist looking your best. He was offering counsel on priorities and the foolishness of letting obsession with possesion rob us attention to real human development and authenticity. The wealthy farmer fixed on doubling his storage space to ensure a long leisurely retirement did not know he had only hours to live. All his possessions were headed to probate and a generation of family squabbling.
We know that we can’t take wealth with us. But Jesus suggest that there is somethingwe can take from this life to eternity. We can store up treasure in heaven by living lives rich in relationships and loving service. This is the stuff of heaven already. Death does not end our earthy networks of community and self-giving, but confirms our discipleship for bringing heaven to earth during our life time.
Wisdom of heart means recognizing that love is the real treasure and that every act of love pays foward to our place in the beloved community. To use our gifts and advantages for others in this life is to come in empty love in order to be filled with God to eternity. Those who have this wisdom already posses the joy of gospel.