Are you wasting your life? How do people squander their days and waste their time?
It’s important to understand how God defines a successful life. Our concept of not wasting our lives may differ from God’s idea of a life well lived. The rich man in Jesus’ parable did not think he was wasting his life by storing up things for himself, but at the end of his life, God called him a fool (Luke 12:16–21).
A clear directive from God about a life well lived is found in Deuteronomy 6:5. Here Moses declares what God wants from His people: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” In Micah 6:8, we find these words: “He has shown you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”
Thus, if we would not waste our lives, then our driving desire will be to love God with every aspect of our being. Jesus asked this sobering question: “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose their very self?” (Luke 9:25). Someone may experience great success in this world and have fame, riches, influence, achievements, and awards to spare. But that may not spell success or contentment in life.
A faithful person who quietly works an ordinary job out of love for God may be, in God’s eyes, more successful than a well-known and more talented person. If we don’t want to waste our lives, then we will pursue God in our lives. A life given wholly to Christ is never wasted. As we live for the glory of God and strive to love Him and others, we know that one day we will hear Him say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Matthew 25:21).
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