Ecclesiastes 1:1-2 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.  Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.  For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
A young boy had been out fishing all day – and he had a great day! The temperature was just right. It was a spring day, a light breeze blew through the trees, and just enough sunlight to make it beautiful. The young boy stumbled on a great fishing spot, a spot that Andy Griffith might have said “was where all the fish kind of came to socialize”. He caught a beautiful string of fish. Running home, he found his daddy so he could show what he’s done. His daddy admired the fish, congratulated his boy, and then said “That’s a wonderful job, son. But was it worth what you paid for it?” They boy said “Yes daddy. The bait wasn’t much, and I reused the same hook with each fish I caught. I didn’t pay hardly anything at all.” His daddy said, “Son, you paid more than that. You paid a day of life for those fish. Was the price worth what you paid?”
Life is precious, and God only gives us so many days to live our lives on this earth. Don’t waste your life!
The Bible tells us that Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived. He was wise because he loved the Lord:
1 Kings 3:3 And Solomon loved the LORD, walking in the statutes of David his father…
Solomon wrote under the inspiration of God the Holy Spirit three books of our Bible. When he was a young man in love he wrote the Song of Solomon, one of the most beautiful books you can read on marriage. While he was wise, he wrote the Book of Proverbs. But as Solomon aged he began to make bad decisions. He let pride and arrogance rule in his heart, and he departed from following the Lord Who saved him. At the end of his life Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes, a book that looked back over a promising life that was wasted by following the wrong things. King David, Solomon’s daddy prayed to the Lord …
Psalms 90:12 (KJV) So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
If Solomon had listened to his daddy and prayed the same prayer, he would not have come to the end of his life, an old man looking back, saying
Ecclesiastes 1:2 … Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
The word “vanity” in the Hebrew is even more dramatic than in the English. The word means “smoke, emptiness”, and it is repeated frequently throughout the book. It is the word hebel, and it sounds like a sigh. Say it with me – HEBELL! Doesn’t it sound like oh, well! This is the sound of a wasted life. This is the sound of what might have been, the sigh of the soul. Solomon warns us all – Don’t Waste Your Life!
I wish I had back all the life I’ve wasted. I’ve wasted a lot of my life trying to please others rather than living for the Lord. What a terrible trap that is! I wrote a comment on a certain website today and, as is usual, someone with the “Politically Correct Police” wrote me to say “You can’t say that!” I started the argue back when I realized – what a waste of my life! Why argue with a barking dog? Why yell at a butterfly? So today I choose to say what I mean, to speak freely as an American, and to back my words with God’s Word – and if you don’t like it then go away. I’m not wasting my life arguing what God has said is true. His Word stands – and I stand with it.
People waste their lives with anger. The Bible says “Be angry, but don’t sin. Don’t let the sun go down on your anger.” (Ephesians 4:26).
People waste their lives with alcohol and drugs, buzzing away the moments when they could be loving others and loving God. God didn’t save us to sit around HIGH. He saved us to be the Light of the world. Dr. Alan Leshner, Director of the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) said, “The most immediate, extensive, and long-lasting problems caused by drug abuse, both for individuals and for society, are often medical in nature. For example, known drug-abuse-related health problems and resulting lost productivity alone cost our society more than $33 billion each year. Illicit drugs directly cause many medical problems. Stimulants such as cocaine and methamphetamine increase the heart rate while constricting the blood vessels. In susceptible individuals, these two actions together set the stage for cardiac arrhythmias and strokes. NIDA research has shown that almost every drug of abuse harms some tissue or organ.” Even Marijuana, which many claim to be safe, can lead to lung cancer, emphysema, and other forms of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). While marijuana can be ingested without smoking it, thereby eliminating these risks, there is still the danger of damage to the reproductive system, the immune system, and loss of cognitive ability.
People waste their lives with pornography and illicit and unbiblical sexual activity, destroying the gift of God for a moment’s pleasure. They should instead consider Joseph in the Old Testament who, when tempted by the King of Egypt’s wife, ran away and suffered 13 years in prison rather than compromising his integrity. Better to be put in prison for your faith than to imprison yourself by your actions. The wage of sin is always death. You may kill yourself by disease, your marriage, or your future God designed love. Don’t waste your life by sexual sin.
Don’t let your peers waste your life. I can’t number the number of times I did something stupid because of peer pressure. I pastored a wonderful Church and left that Church at the height of my ministry there because of peer pressure. Preachers that I considered friends “recommended” that I take an assignment at another Church in a nearby state and, though everything in my heart seemed to tell me “Don’t go” I went anyway. Why did these fellow Pastors do this? I don’t know. I do know, however, that God saved me from a bad mistake, and brought me to a great Church called Riverview Baptist in Columbia, Tennessee. All things do indeed work together for good to those who love the Lord. I will love this congregation with all my heart, but I will also preach and teach the Word of God with all boldness, rebuking when necessary, fulfilling my calling. I will not waste my life again, nor allow anyone else to talk me into anything that God has not thoroughly endorsed.
Don’t waste your life!