The Bad and the Wasted Life

 
alabaster-box
Photo by Mary’s Comfort
 
 
 
There was a quote that I read this morning that spoke to me. Phillips Brooks, a clergyman and author in the 19th century said, “Bad will be the day for every man when he becomes absolutely contented with the life he is leading, with the thoughts he is thinking, with the deeds he is doing; when there is not forever beating at the doors of his soul some great desire to do something larger, which he knows that he was meant and made to do because he is still, in spite of all, the child of God.”

The bad?

The bad is when we live our lives for ourselves and we are content with the mediocre and the status quote. I see this all the time as I minister to college student. It is so easy for students to come to college just wanting to obtain a degree so that they can land the “big” job, so that they can buy the nice car, and then get married and have 2.5 kids and then buy the house and then retire early in their summer home.

Were we created for something more?

There is nothing wrong with getting a job, buying a car, getting married, having kids, buying a house and retiring, but the challenge for Christ-followers is to live a life that is worthy of the calling that we have received and not settle for the status quo.

So often, we are more influenced by what the world tells us than what we see in Scripture. The life of a Christ-follower is complete and absolute abandonment to God in light of His Supremacy. With each life stage that people go through, the life of abandonment looks different but the obedience to God should be the same.

Are we all called to go to college for four years and then look for a job? How about going for two years and then helping out with a church plant for one year to get a fresh perspective of God’s Kingdom around the world and then finish off college?

Are we all called to get a corporate job after graduation? How about surrendering our desire for success, as the world see success and do something that might not give the best salary or benefits?

Are we all called to get married? What happened to the call of singlehood and how in the past Church traditions there were people who took the Apostle Paul’s words seriously in 1 Co 7? It doesn’t help when there are so many weddings during the summer.

One of the saddest things that can happen to someone is being on a road that they were not supposed to travel on. Often times the “dead ends” of our lives help us to re-evaluate and refocus on what our priorities are.

Is there ever a wasted life?

It is only wasted if we fail to live for God. In God’s economy, a life that is wasted on God is never wasted. I am reminded of the woman with the alabaster jar. The world thought it was a waste but Jesus saw it as something that was beautiful. If I am going to waste my life then I want to make sure that I waste it on Jesus, my Lover and Savior who gave His all for me.

Here is a video by John Piper who challenged people to think about wasting their life. If you don’t have time to watch the whole thing and want to get to the meat of his message, fast forward to 18:38