The American Tragedy

In his book Don’t Waste Your Life, John Piper tells the story of a couple that he knew who decided to take an early retirement in Florida; and spend all their time cruising on their yacht, playing softball, and collecting sea shells. His response to this kind of life they decided to live was as follows:

I thought it might be a joke. A spoof on the American Dream. But it wasn’t. Tragically, this was the dream: Come to the end of your life – your one and only precious, God-given life – and let the last great work of your life, before you give an account to your Creator, be this: playing softball and collecting shells. Picture them before Christ at the great day of judgment: “Look, Lord. See my shells.” That is a tragedy. And people today are spending billions of dollars to persuade you to embrace that tragic dream. Over against that, I put my protest: Don’t buy it. Don’t waste your life.

Like myself, you may not be at the end of your life yet. But, we can’t wait until the end to make changes, because, well, tomorrow may be the end – whether we are ready for it or not!

  • What are you spending your time doing?
  • Is it God-honoring?
  • Are there any changes you can/must make now to be more God-honoring with your time, resources, gifts/talents, and life?

Buying into God’s “retirement” plan – being spent up to the last breath…



2 thoughts on “The American Tragedy

    1. I believe the issue is that this couple is retiring early (say 55 yrs old), and then living out the rest of their life on a yacht, and doing these other things. So, the remaining 25-30 yrs of their life is spent doing this.

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