“What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.”
“The sun comes up and the sun goes down,
then does it again, and again—the same old round.
The wind blows south, the wind blows north.
Around and around and around it blows,
blowing this way, then that—the whirling, erratic wind.
All the rivers flow into the sea,
but the sea never fills up.
The rivers keep flowing to the same old place,
and then start all over and do it again.
Everything’s boring, utterly boring—
no one can find any meaning in it.
Boring to the eye,
boring to the ear.
What was will be again,
what happened will happen again.
There’s nothing new on this earth.
Year after year it’s the same old thing.”
Sitting in the corner and safely tucked away while unobtrusively observing the traffic of at a local diner, I see that there is nothing new to be learned of life. Names and faces are different from the last visit but people are people nonetheless. At one table there sits a couple. Their state of health overrides their true age, giving them an appearance much older than they are. Tubes exit her nostrils and are connected to the tank of oxygen in the seat beside her. She is obese. She is chatting on the mobile. She is trying to delicately remove the wedge of lemon in her mouth and place it into her glass of water, while both hands are otherwise occupied. She is unwilling to free up either hand to ease the process. She awkwardly struggles for a few minutes. He has left the table to visit the restroom. My order arrived, distracting my attention before I can witness the end of the challenge.
A young family occupies the booth to my right. The two children, a boy and a girl, are elementary school age. Both are ready to leave long before the parents are. So they don their jackets, gather their things and stand in the aisle between the booth and the table. They forget their parents, and their parents forget them, while they invade the privacy of other diners. The little girl starts a bullying tirade of her little brother. When the father rises from the booth and makes his way to the cashier’s counter, she unabashedly commands her father with, “Hurry up, stupid.”
The middle-aged/senior couple who replaces them in the same booth order a banana split. Everyone’s attention follows the server while she places this tempting treat before them. There is an obvious difference in ages for this man and woman but it is obvious they regard each other quite dear. It is obvious from their responses to each other and to interested passers-by that sharing banana splits is part of their personal tradition.
Across the dining room, a middle-aged white male, typical American male, shares a booth with what appears to be his wife of Asian origin and with what appears to be their teen daughter. The teen has just left the booth for the restroom and the couple continue a private conversation. Both of them have a look on their face as if to say, “What else can we do?” The woman seems to be more stressed than the man. Later, that same man holds the restaurant doors open for me on my way out so that I do not “lose my leftovers”. Minutes later, I watched them drive away in a white Cadillac Escalade pickup truck.
There is nothing new under the sun. People are simply people, even though their age, their health, their family status and their economic status are defining categories. Relationships continue to be challenging or successful irrespective of these lines of delineation. There are groups of people I would hate to follow home; there are sets of people who fill me with hope and adoration.
People are simply people, but relationships between people are rarely simple. There is nothing new under the sun, other than people are simply people and all of us are in dire need of Faith, Hope, and Love. Without Truth, there will be a loss of faith, hope and love. Where there is relationship, more than likely there will be a need for healing.
There is nothing new under the sun here on this terrestrial plane. Yet all there is to know and experience of Love will never be exhausted or depleted. New every morning is Love’s faithfulness.