New International Version
Invest in Many Ventures
3 If clouds are full of water,
they pour rain on the earth.
Whether a tree falls to the south or to the north,
in the place where it falls, there it will lie.
4 Whoever watches the wind will not plant;
whoever looks at the clouds will not reap.
6 Sow your seed in the morning,
and at evening let your hands not be idle,(E)
for you do not know which will succeed,
whether this or that,
or whether both will do equally well.
Remember Your Creator While Young
7 Light is sweet,
and it pleases the eyes to see the sun.(F)
8 However many years anyone may live,
let them enjoy them all.
But let them remember(G) the days of darkness,
for there will be many.
Everything to come is meaningless.
9 You who are young, be happy while you are young,
and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth.
Follow the ways of your heart
and whatever your eyes see,
but know that for all these things
God will bring you into judgment.(H)
10 So then, banish anxiety(I) from your heart
and cast off the troubles of your body,
for youth and vigor are meaningless.(J)
12 Remember(K) your Creator
in the days of your youth,
before the days of trouble(L) come
and the years approach when you will say,
“I find no pleasure in them”—
2 before the sun and the light
and the moon and the stars grow dark,
and the clouds return after the rain;
3 when the keepers of the house tremble,
and the strong men stoop,
when the grinders cease because they are few,
and those looking through the windows grow dim;
4 when the doors to the street are closed
and the sound of grinding fades;
when people rise up at the sound of birds,
but all their songs grow faint;(M)
5 when people are afraid of heights
and of dangers in the streets;
when the almond tree blossoms
and the grasshopper drags itself along
and desire no longer is stirred.
Then people go to their eternal home(N)
and mourners(O) go about the streets.
6 Remember him—before the silver cord is severed,
and the golden bowl is broken;
before the pitcher is shattered at the spring,
and the wheel broken at the well,
7 and the dust returns(P) to the ground it came from,
and the spirit returns to God(Q) who gave it.(R)
The Conclusion of the Matter
9 Not only was the Teacher wise, but he also imparted knowledge to the people. He pondered and searched out and set in order many proverbs.(U) 10 The Teacher(V) searched to find just the right words, and what he wrote was upright and true.(W)
Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.(Y)