Invest in Life
Open Your Bible
Ecclesiastes 11:1-10, Psalm 94:17-19, Colossians 3:21-25
One day after work, I stopped by a retail store on the way home. Everyone and their mother was in line waiting for this one poor girl to ring them up at the register. I couldn’t help but notice she looked upset—haggard, irritated, all the unhappy adjectives. My first reaction was to wish she had a better spirit of customer service, but then something softened, and I was convicted to strike up a conversation once it was my turn. The short story was this: No, she wasn’t having a good day, because her best friend had just died, and she was the one who had discovered the body. To intensify her grief, she couldn’t find someone to cover her shift that coming Saturday and had to miss the funeral.
As you can imagine, few words felt appropriate in this situation. Doing nothing felt cold, but offering words of false comfort felt colder. How would Jesus respond?
Long story short, the Spirit prompted me to do something tangible for this girl—not to persuade her that everything would be okay or that knowing God would suddenly lessen the pain, but because the moments when I’ve felt most loved were moments when another human being did something unexpected to show God’s kindness to me. So, I returned to the store with a chocolate cupcake and a card that said this: “I’m so sorry you lost your best friend. Nobody should ever have to go through that. God sees you and grieves with you.”
The world encourages us to spend our days like money, trading them in for pleasure and recreation. But, friends, God urges us to invest our lives in the kingdom. He promises that we will reap a harvest one day (Galatians 6:9). We can’t guarantee that one conversation or random act of kindness will be the one to change someone’s life, but we can trust that God does not waste one moment of our lives. Ecclesiastes 11:6 says it this way: “In the morning sow your seed, and at evening do not let your hand rest.”
Even while operating out of a focus on life under the sun, the writer of Ecclesiastes lifts his head for a moment to comment on what life looks like in the kingdom. He acknowledges there is a God, one who has the power to make what we sow flourish, as well as bring judgment on our actions.
We never know God’s timing or how He might multiply the work of our hands. So, we sink our teeth into each day. Investing, planting, watering, we pray for the flourishing of God’s movement in the world. But even when we don’t see the fruit, God is still trustworthy with the results.
“Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord
and not for people, knowing that you will receive the reward
of an inheritance from the Lord” (Colossians 3:23–24).
Instead of spending all our days like money, let’s look for ways to invest in life. Giving someone a cupcake to remind them that their grief isn’t insignificant feels so small—almost silly. But as I watched the girl behind the register run around the counter with a big smile and arms spread open, it felt like Jesus was up to something.