Are you more concerned about your duration or impact on this world?

Are you more concerned about your duration or impact on this world?

James 4:14

You do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.

A Lasting Legacy

C.S. Lewis and Charles Spurgeon are among my favorite people. Compared to today’s lifespan, they didn’t live very long lives, but, wow, did they ever impact our world. Even those who are not believers love the writings of C.S. Lewis, and even though he had a biblical theme of redemption in all of his writings, he is very popular among those who are not Christians. These two men were not that concerned with the duration of their lives, but they still made a huge impact on the world. What about you? What about me? Are we more concerned with our duration in this life or with the impact that our lives will have?

Brevity of Life

If we look at the eternality of God, our lives are nothing more than a vapor or a morning fog–the sun comes up and it’s burned off and gone (James 4:14). Our days are nothing more than a breath and a fleeting shadow, and when the sun appears, poof, it’s vanished (Psalm 144:4), which is why we can’t even brag about what we’ll do tomorrow, for it may never come (Proverbs 27:1). Doesn’t this make you desire to have an impact on the world? No, none of us will ever impact the world like C.S. Lewis or Charles Spurgeon, but we can impact our own little corner of the world: our workplaces, our families, or our communities. Why then should we be concerned about having a long life? What we do for others will live on well beyond after we’re gone.

Passing Away Before our Eyes

Heraclitus once wrote that you can’t step into the same stream twice. Why? Because it changes the very moment you step out of it. Everything is changing except God and His Word (Malachi 3:6). We’ll never get a second chance, and not another minute can our money buy. Our lives are just a passing breeze that moves past us, never to return again (Psalm 78:39). We must redeem every single day and use it for God’s glory (Ephesians 5:16). So ask yourself, are you more concerned about your duration, or are you more concerned with your impact on this world? We know what will have a longer lasting effect, don’t we?

A Closing Prayer

God, I know my finite existence is here today and gone tomorrow and why I need to focus on impacting the world for Your purposes and not my own. What I do for myself will be gone forever, but what I do for others for Your sake lasts forever. For this I am thankful and pray in the mighty name of Jesus.


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