Do you ever wonder if your life is making a difference in the world? Do you want your life to impact the world positively? Wouldn’t it be nice to think at least some of what you are doing with your life is making a lasting and constructive impact on the world? If so, you’re not alone, and Jesus expects you to make an impact for the Kingdom, not just coast through life.
Most people ponder about making a difference. Something inside our being haunts us and compels us to ask whether our life efforts will produce a lasting impact in the world. These thoughts tend to be more prevalent during our youth, a time when we are idealistic and relatively unencumbered. However, desires to contribute bubble up periodically throughout our lives.
What really frightens us is the amount of time we spend on unimportant matters. We stress how we are caught up in the rat race, day after day, then one day wake up to find our lives are meaningless and empty – or worse yet, over! Someone once said the greatest tragedy of all is to live a wasted life. There is Good News, however. Jesus died, was buried, and rose again so that no one would ever have to live the tragedy of a wasted life.
Jesus told us of a man who had truly wasted his life (Like 12:13-21). This man spent his entire life accumulating wealth, living for the moment, enjoying the good life, and getting ahead in business. Then, suddenly, he died. Everything he had spent his life and energies on died along with him. He had wasted his entire life.
This man thought he had planned well for the future. He had been blessed with good crops, so he said, “I will tear down my barns and make bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.” (Luke 12:18). Then he said to himself, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat drink, and be merry.” (Luke 12:19).
This man sounds like a true 21st century guy, but Jesus considers this scenario a tragedy. Consider a Christian couple who live the American dream in their work-family-friends bubble, but never step outside the bubble and make an impact for God. They retire and spend their days traveling, socializing, and recreating, but with no time for God’s Kingdom. This is a tragedy. In contrast, another couple volunteers each weekend at the local soup kitchen until they are killed one night by a deranged robber. They die serving the LORD. For whatever reason, God chose to take them in His timing. This is not a tragedy (Philippians 1:21-24).
Each of us must consider carefully what is a wasted life and what type of life makes an impact. Many people have ability, ambition, accomplishments, and assets, but squander on Earthly pursuits. Jesus exhorts us, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on Earth, where moth and rust destroy, and thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.” (Matthew 6:19-20). Jesus also reminds us, “What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” (Mark 8:36).
God is telling us that investing our riches in ourselves is not a normal life, it is a tragedy. God gives us so very, very much, but most of us squander it all on ourselves. God is telling us it is normal to invest in things that will outlast us – people and the Word of God – things that will be here even after our lives have ended.
What kind of life are you living? Are you living an impactful, normal life where you are giving back your time, talents, and treasures to others? Are you making an impact on other people, especially the ones expected to outlast you? Are you investing in the Word of God or in Earthly portfolios?
Ask yourself today whether you are making an impact for God. If you’re not, spend some time finding a way to help make an impact on others so you can avoid the mistakes of the rich fool. Jesus died so you do not have to live a wasted life, but it’s up to you to find the ways to make an impact.
“I’m Normal.” – I AM
It’s God talking to you.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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