By Randi Peck
Heading into this holiday season, researchers estimated the average adult in America would spend around $1,000 on Christmas presents (1). The typical parent was anticipated to shell out $422 per child. (2) And a whopping 56% of shoppers planned on buying these gifts with money they do not have…
It’s December 26th. Buyers remorse, anyone?
We often claim that, as Americans, we are good at spending money. But that would imply money well spent. In reality, we’re really bad at spending money. What we’re exceptional at is wasting it.
2017 says its farewells, and we have spent another year. Oh, how long 365 days once seemed! And how the same 24 hours I knew as a child now prove to be a vapor. Somehow, still possessing 1,440 minutes… And yet, even as they disappointedly sped by faster on Christmas Day, back then, they now fly by unapologetically each and every day. Take it or leave it.
But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. (Luke 21:34)
Dissipation: to be scattered, wastefully.
Sadly, I think many of us would label months, years, or even decades of our lives as “scattered, wastefully”.
These accelerated years are always going to leave us with some buyers’ remorse. Decisions we shake our heads at. Seasons we wish we’d taken advantage of.
But there is One who spent his life well. Perfectly, even. We may get small tastes of this kind of spending, but this Man was flawless in his purchase. Intentional about every hour spent, each mile walked, and every conversation shared. He gave of himself— a costly dispersing he would not regret.
And it is because he gave— not just of himself, but because he gave himself— that we have been offered Life well spent.
2018 approaches. I know it won’t slow down for us. It will promise much, and deliver little… Unless. Unless we seek the True Treasure…
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food. Incline your ear and come to me; hear, that your soul may live. (Isaiah 55:2-3)
What if, instead of scattering our lives wastefully, we devoted them intentionally? What if, say, each and every person at Heritage decided to incline their ears to God and commit their all to him? One thousand lives, spent solely on Jesus!
I have no doubt that we- individually and then as a whole- would discover our budgets divinely reallocated. Our time invested wisely. Our relationships spent as wholly holy.
If each husband and wife, each dad and mom, each doctor and teacher, each janitor and barista devoted their whole being, their possessions and their decisions to our Purchaser…
Dull quiet time in the morning would be overshadowed by passionate sessions of worship, through the Word!
Struggling or distracted marriages would be transformed into teams on mission for God’s kingdom!
Daily routines- dropping off kids at school and clocking into work- would become opportunities to sow seeds and reap the harvest!
And these sincere offerings of the now; these seemingly fleeting moments spent basking in his grace… They add up! Becoming a purchase, with no regret. A satisfactory running out. A life well spent.