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Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper
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Don't Waste Your Life (2003)

by John Piper

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2,658242,247 (4.06)14
  1. 20
    The Gospel for Real Life (with Study Guide) by Jerry Bridges (soflbooks)
    soflbooks: Piper convinces us not to waste our life; Bridges shows us how. Both men have written many excellent books, but these two are my favorites.
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» See also 14 mentions

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What a great book on focusing on the war versus merely existing. Some of my favorite quotes:
"He is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him."
"Because I was created by God & for His glory...My desire is to make knowing & enjoying God the passionate pursuit of my life." Louie Giglio
"We exist to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples, through Jesus Christ."
"the cross is not the terrible end to an otherwise god-fearing and happy life, but it meets us at the beginning of our communion with Christ. When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die." Dietrich Bonhoeffer
No one ever said that they learned their deepest lessons of life, or had their sweetest encounters with God, on the sunny days. People go deep with God when the drought comes. That is the way God designed it.
There is more of God's glory to be seen and savored through suffering than through self-serving escape.
But when all is said and done, the promise and design of God for people who do not waste their lives is clear. "All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted" (2 Timothy 3:12). And when persecution pauses, the groanings of this age remain. "We ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies" (Romans 8:23). We will groan one way or the other. As Paul said, "sorrowful, yet always rejoicing" (2 Corinthians 6:10).
Paul had learned what love is. Love is not Christ's making much of us or making life easy. Love is doing what he must do, at great cost to himself (and often to us), to enable us to enjoy making much of him forever.
On the far side of every risk-even if it results in death-the love of God triumphs. This is the faith that frees us to risk for the cause of God. It is not heroism, or lust for adventure, or courageous self-reliance, or efforts to earn God's favor. It is childlike faith in the triumph of God's love-that on the other side of all our risks, for the sake of righteousness, God will still be holding us. We will be eternally satisfied in him. Nothing will have been wasted.
Affliction raised his sword to cut off the head of Paul's faith. But instead the hand of faith snatched the arm of affliction and forced it to cut off part of Paul's worldliness. Affliction is made the servant of godliness and humility and love. Satan meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.
Sometimes I use the phrase "wartime lifestyle" or "wartime mind-set." … It tells me that there is a war going on in the world between Christ and Satan, truth and falsehood, belief and unbelief. It tells me that there are weapons to be funded and used, but that these weapons are not swords or guns or bombs but the Gospel and prayer and self-sacrificing love (2 Corinthians 10:3-5). And it tells me that the stakes of this conflict are higher than any other war in history; they are eternal and infinite: heaven or hell, eternal joy or eternal torment (Matthew 25:46).
I am wired by nature to love the same toys that the world loves. I start to fit in. I start to love what others love. I start to call earth "home."
when the trifling fog of life clears and I see what I am really on earth to do, I groan over the petty pursuits that waste so many lives-and so much of mine.
Oh, that young and old would turn off the television, take a long walk, and dream about feats of courage for a cause ten thousand times more important than American democracy-as precious as that is. If we would dream and if we would pray, would not God answer?
if your work creates a web of redemptive relationships and becomes an adornment for the Gospel of the glory of Christ, your satisfaction will last forever and God will be exalted in your joy.
Missions exists because worship 'doesn't. When this age is over, and the countless millions of the redeemed fall on their faces before the throne of God, missions will be no more. It is a temporary necessity. But worship abides forever. Worship, therefore, is the fuel and the goal of missions.
We are hypocrites to pretend enthusiasm for overseas ministry while neglecting the miseries at home.
Missions and mercy are inextricable because the very Gospel we take to the nations models and mandates mercy to the poor at home.
Help us to see that if we try to guard our wealth, instead of using it to show it's not our god, then we will waste our lives, however we succeed. ( )
  dannywahlquist | May 14, 2013 |
I wish I could hand a copy of this book to every professing Christian under the age of 20. (And quite a few under the age of 100.) ( )
  chriskrycho | Mar 30, 2013 |
PUBLISHER'S COMMENT: John Piper writes, "I will tell you what a tragedy is. I will show you how to waste your life. Consider this story from the February 1998 Reader's Digest: A couple 'took early retirement from their jobs in the Northeast five years ago when he was 59 and she was 51. Now they live in Punta Gorda, Florida, where they cruise on their 30-foot trawler, play softball and collect shells. . . .' Picture them before Christ at the great day of judgment: 'Look, Lord. See my shells.' That is a tragedy.

"God created us to live with a single passion: to joyfully display his supreme excellence in all the spheres of life. The wasted life is the life without this passion. God calls us to pray and think and dream and plan and work not to be made much of, but to make much of him in every part of our lives."

This work is a passionate call for this generation to make their lives count for eternity. John Piper acknowledges that the risks for those who seek to accomplish something in life - risks in relationships for the sake of righteousness and authenticity, risks with money for the cause of the Gospel, and risks in witnessing to the truth and beauty of Christ. Readers will find their passion for the cross of Christ enlarged as a result of listening to this title.
  SCalvin | Jan 26, 2012 |
"Don't Waste Your Life" is a manifesto for gospel-centered living. Piper clearly and passionately explains the basis for Christian joy: the glory of God. When one lives for God's glory, he or she finds life's deepest joy and purpose. Piper unpacks this profound truth in relationship to suffering, vocation, risk, mission, and much more. Piper offers an invaluable service to the church: understanding the glory of God in light of the cross - the "blazing center of the glory of God" - as it informs one's daily life as followers of Jesus. Very helpful. A+ ( )
  bsanner | Oct 23, 2011 |
It's a great book. It does what it does well, but it doesn't deal with the possible (or even, likely) reaction that people might have to it. That is, to draw their sense of approval and validation from how successful they feel they are at "not wasting" their life. If they aren't what they consider to be successful at this, then they will feel less approved or loved by God (even if they know intellectually that isn't true). So if they aren't "successful," then they will be depressed. If they are "successful," then they will feel that all is well, but only because their identity and significance is attached to their performance. It can easily be a hidden lair of religion: a subtle snare of works-based righteousness. This is how "Don't Waste Your Life" almost ruined mine. I'm only now coming out of this myself.So, just remind yourself that your identity, significance, approval, validation, and justification come from Christ alone. You are loved and valued unconditionally. You don't have to justify your existence. You just have to live loved. ( )
  davegregg | May 3, 2011 |
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To Louie Giglio and the passion of his heart for the renown of Jesus Christ in this generation.
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For Christians and Non-Christians-- The Bible says, "You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body" (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). (Preface)
My father was an evangelist. In fact he still is, even though he doesn't travel now.
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John Piper writes, "I will tell you what a tragedy is. I will show you how to waste your life. Consider this story from the February 1998 Reader's Digest: A couple 'took early retirement from their jobs in the Northeast five years ago when he was 59 and she was 51. Now they live in Punta Gorda, Florida, where they cruise on their 30-foot trawler, play softball and collect shells. . . .' Picture them before Christ at the great day of judgment: 'Look, Lord. See my shells.' That is a tragedy.

"God created us to live with a single passion: to joyfully display his supreme excellence in all the spheres of life. The wasted life is the life without this passion. God calls us to pray and think and dream and plan and work not to be made much of, but to make much of him in every part of our lives."

This work is a passionate call for this generation to make their lives count for eternity. John Piper acknowledges that the risks for those who seek to accomplish something in life - risks in relationships for the sake of righteousness and authenticity, risks with money for the cause of the Gospel, and risks in witnessing to the truth and beauty of Christ. 

Readers will find their passion for the cross of Christ enlarged as a result of listening to this title.
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