A Life Well Spent
It finally dawned on me—Christmas is this week! As 2015 winds down and we shift into a new year, people are coming up with new resolutions that will probably fade away in like 6 weeks. Many of us ask ourselves what we need to change or improve about ourselves this time of year. After all, it’s a respectable thing to become a better and brighter “you” over time!
Well, if you ask me, I don’t really care at all about New Year’s resolutions. If there’s something I know I need to change, it shouldn’t happen just once a year. Though, it is nice to have a once-a-year tradition of reflection and planning. But, I digress…
After talking with some people here and there about their resolutions for 2016, I began trailing off thinking about something else. Perhaps, they’re really just thinking about how they want to spend their life. This is really what it boils down to. What is a life well spent? How can I take one year at a time to spend my life well?
What a great question! I believe I have the answer.
I believe that a life spent making a name for yourself is a sure wasted life.
Hold up. To just about everyone, this is completely too far. This is going overboard. Payte, this is just dumb. Why would you even say that? Before you stop reading further, I want to challenge your thinking.
We are finite beings. We are human. We are not God. I want you to think for a second what you will be doing 9,238,360,293,651,018,365 years from now. Where will you be?
Ah, now we are getting somewhere.
You can be the best ____ but you and I will never compare to God. A celebrity’s name may be in the spotlight now, but they will fade away. There is no other name better than Jesus. He alone is worthy of much higher praise than any man or woman—including us.
A life spent making Jesus known is a life well spent.
What I’m trying to share here requires an eternal perspective. Right now, man receives much attention. We love to focus on ourselves and our fleshly desires. But Christ will always rule and reign. We will see this more clearly when he returns. Man will in no way come close to the glory that God will receive! Just as the builder of a house receives greater honor than the house itself (cf. Heb. 3:3), so does God than his creation.
I can be the best “me” I can be, and improve myself each year. Or instead, I could behold God and worship him all the rest of my days. In response to this, someone may ask, “Can’t you do both? Can’t you try to improve yourself and behold God?” But, where do you see this in the Bible, friends? Our relationship with God is not about checklists or formulas—it’s about being crucified with Christ (Gal. 2:20). Payte no longer lives. I have died and my life is hidden with Christ (Col. 3:3).
What did Jesus say?
“Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it,” (Matt. 10:39). “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, & he who humbles himself will be exalted,” (Luke 14:11). These two statements from Jesus make it clear that we must not promote ourselves, or simply keep trying harder every year that passes by.
Furthermore, let’s look at Jesus’ office as High Priest. Jesus was qualified more than any other man for this office, but he humbled himself. Obeying the Father, seeking to do his will was his priority. Jesus didn’t promote himself to become our great High Priest, but was appointed by the Father, (cf. Heb. 5:5).
From what Jesus modeled for us, we also are not to promote ourselves. But we are to behold God. Let us come to the end of ourselves and seek to do God’s will, not our own. Let this be our heart’s desire.
As you can probably guess, I have not got this down.
I still seek after my own selfish desires. As the author of this post, you can be sure that I feel inadequate writing this. Please don’t imagine me writing this with contempt. I write this so that you may have joy! It’d be no surprise to me if the things I share in my blog are mostly for me and not for you. Yet, I believe God has led me to share these thoughts while admitting to all that I, myself, am coming to the end of myself, so that I may completely behold God.
To my subscribers, friends, family, visitors, and everyone else, I beseech you, make Jesus known. If you have been resurrected from the dead, born again, walking as a new creation in Christ, tell everyone how great your God is! Don’t waste your life trying to promote yourself—promote God—the creator of all.
This is what I believe to be a life well spent.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you!
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