11 Teacher: Don’t be afraid to release your bread upon the waters,
for in due time you will find it.
2 Divide your portion—put seven here, maybe eight there—
for you can never be sure when or where disaster will strike.
3 When the clouds are dark and heavy with rain,
showers will fall upon the earth.
When a tree falls—whether to the south or the north—
it will stay where it lands.
4 Those who watch and wait for favorable winds never plant,
and those who watch and fret over every cloud never harvest.
5 You can no more predict the path of the wind than you can explain how a child’s bones are formed in a mother’s womb. Even more, you will never understand the workings of the God who made all things.
6 Get up early to sow your seed,
and in the evening find worthwhile things to do,
For you never know which will profit you—
maybe this, maybe that, maybe both.
Hard work, not idleness, is at the heart of wisdom. Rewards come when we most need and least expect them.
7 Light is sweet;
one glimpse of the sun delights the eyes.
8 If a person lives many years, then he should learn to enjoy each and every one; but he should not forget the dark days ahead, for there will be plenty of them. All that is to come—whether bright days or dark—is fleeting. 9 Be happy, and celebrate all of the goodness of youth while you are young. Cultivate a cheerful heart every day you have youth. Go where your heart takes you. Take in the sights. Enjoy, but remember that God will hold us accountable for all that we do. 10 When all is said and done, clear your mind of all its worries. Free your body of all its troubles while you can, for youth and the prime of life will soon vanish.