What if the greatest thing is not to go out in a blaze of glory, but to honor God with a life that seeks to do his will in the little things? Not to climb the highest mountain, but to stay on the uneven course that life has marked out for you? Not dying for your faith, but staying true to it over a difficult lifetime?
Think of the 24-hour blocks of your life as bank-fresh bundles of a hundred $1 bills. Your challenge each day is to “spend your time.” You can't bank it. You can't save up until you get 500 or 1,000. You get a fresh handful of life currency each morning and any unspent balance evaporates before tomorrow comes.
You spend life assets when you mentor a new employee who is struggling, listen to a friend who is upset, or volunteer to help someone catch up.
You are laying down your life when you are generous with hard-earned money to help someone who has lost her job, a family that is being drained by long-term illness, or the ministries of your church.
You have invested a huge chunk of your life in giving birth, praying through your tears for a struggling child, and investing all the time, energy, and passion that go into molding a life for what lies ahead in this challenging world.
You are spending your life capital by putting your love for a fiancée or mate or child above career advancement that moves you from spiritual stability, calls for you to spend far too much time away from people who need you more than money, or calls for you to compromise some central value you have embraced.
We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us — and we ought to lay down our lives for one another (1 John 3:16).
Could it be that there are people who would die in bold, heroic moments (i.e., "cash in" everything) who just don't grasp that we must spend the smaller increments of our lives in unselfish, other-directed events that honor God by serving the people he has placed on our way? What a shame that they never developed a concept of serving God by serving those created in his image in small ways, in small increments, and in unseen circumstances that add up to an eternal difference in the lives of others.
You have today's life capital in hand. Spend it wisely — in small increments of unselfishness here and there. Or you will lose it completely.