Here are some questions that many people never get around to asking- What am I living for? What is the reason for my life? What does a well lived life look like?
It’s unfortunate many people never ask these questions. Without answering these questions your life doesn’t take on a specific direction. Without asking the big questions you can’t set the course of your life in motion. The people who never ask questions like these are often drifting through life aimlessly. They are living what Ecclesiastes calls “meaningless life”. Here are some reflections on a meaningless life.
Failed to learn
Failed to learn from your mistakes… and you’re doomed to repeat them. Learning is part of growing. When you stop learning, you stop growing. This is the difference between a man and a boy (1 Corinthians 13:4). We show a lot of patience with boys but we expect grown men to learn from their mistakes. This is probably where the saying, “fool me once, shame on you- fool me twice, shame on me” comes from.
This is what separates us from the animal kingdom. A dog returns to his own vomit but a man should learn from his mistakes (2 Peter 2:22). Animals make the same mistakes over and over again because they don’t know any better. They don’t share human’s capacity to learn from mistakes. So I guess you could say a man who fails to learn from his mistakes is less than human.
Failed to love
Is there a greater tragedy in life than a failure to love? If love is the highest of human emotions, then to be human is to love deeply. It would also suggest that a failure to love would make one less than human (1 Corinthians 13:4).
An excellent example of this in literature is the character Miss Havisham from Charles Dickens book Great Expectations. She was “burned” by a love in the past and as a result her heart became incapable of loving. Not only could she not love, but she was no longer able to see others around her love deeply. Ultimately Miss Havisham “burned” herself as a result of her incapacity to love.
God gives us our ability to love (1 John 4:16). Loving others is putting God on display by our very lives. So a man or a woman who does not love is a man or a woman who is less than they were created to be (Romans 12:9).
Failed to Live for more than yourself
This is one of the most basic questions of all- am I here for myself or am I here for others? Does my life consist of what I can get or from what I can give? This question penetrates to the very core of a person’s life. Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, answered this question in Ecclesiastes 12:13. He said you were created to fear God and keep his commandments. Living for anything less than this is less than you were created to be. Thus, you weren’t created to live for yourself- you were created by God’s pleasure, for God’s glory!
So how are you doing here? Grade your own test here. Look back over the course of your life- how much of it has been lived for you and how much of it has been lived for God’s glory? You were meant for far more than just living for yourself (Hebrews 6:9-11). You were created to have a life of meaning! You were created to impact this world! You were made to make a difference! Don’t settle for anything less- don’t settle for a meaningless life!