24 There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God, 25 for apart from him who can eat or who can have enjoyment? 26 For to the one who pleases him God has given wisdom and knowledge and joy, but to the sinner he has given the business of gathering and collecting, only to give to one who pleases God. This also is vanity and a striving after wind.
H.L. Mencken once famously defined Puritanism as "The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, my be happy." Go back and read the sermons from that time in our nation's past and you'll see that was hardly an exaggeration.
Happiness is not a sin. To enjoy our work and the fruits of our labor is not a sign of having too easy or pleasing a life. Health, wealth, and success are no sins; and no one ought to be made to feel guilty for them. They are blessings to be enjoyed, not curses to be weighed down with.
But the writer of Ecclesiastes is right about something. Apart from a life in God no one can eat or find enjoyment. All blessings turn to curses and there is never ever any sense of accomplishment or satisfaction. It's simply never enough or it's always too much. In the words of Ecclesiastes it's all "vanity, vanity -- a striving after wind."
If our lives seem to be all vanity and vexation and meaningless toil without any sense of joy or happiness then it's time we ask ourselves a Jesus question, "What good is it if a man gains the whole world, yet loses his own soul?"
I'd say we know the answer to that is no good at all.