Life is good? A Lesson on Indifference

I was at the tail-end of a long day spent traveling here and there, and everywhere.


The late afternoon sunlight was fading fast, but the flickering light of home and rest burned brighter in my mind.


I had many miles and street lights still to go, and it was at one of those lights where I saw an intriguing sign on the backend of a nearby car:


photo: Raye Wortel

photo: Raye Wortel


Most things you read on the back of cars leaves you wishing you hadn’t taken the time to inch in closer, squint your eyes a little tighter, or crane your neck a little further, but this one was different for me.


I wondered…


Was the owner of the sign trying to say: I like the quote “Life is good.” but you can hate it, or love it.


Or were they saying: I think my life is good, you may hate yours, or love it. I don’t care.


Either way, the sign could have said just two words:


photo: Raye Wortel

photo: Raye Wortel


Indifference is the background tempo of this age.


I don’t care what you do as long as it doesn’t impact, undermine, or burden my agenda or my way of doing things.


And sadly, the beat of indifference seems to quicken this time of year as we dial in on our own preparations and plans for a perfect holiday.


So how can we push the boundaries of compassion, interest, and attention past our own inner circle of relationships this Christmas season?


Well fortunately, God has an app for that.


Not an app for your favorite electronic device, but an application for his treasured creation – you and me.


Here are a few ways we can turn our mindset of indifference into hope this season:


Believe you are a light, but know you can’t shine on your own. Jesus tells an interesting parable about 10 virgins in Matthew 25:1-13. They all set out carrying lamps, looking to meet their bridegroom. Five of them bring extra oil in case it takes longer for the Man of their dreams to arrive, and the other five decide to wing it. The bridegroom comes at midnight ready to usher the virgins into the banquet hall. The five whose lights were bright were welcomed, while the other five who let their lights go dim, had to go on a late-night shopping trip to get more oil. Arriving late to the party, they found the door to the banquet hall shut. They begged to be let in, but the long-awaited host said the worst words that could ever be said, “I don’t know you.” We are lights, and our oil is Jesus. Take him with you wherever you go, so when you’re feeling dim in a broken world, he can refuel and refresh you until the hour of his arrival.


Prepare yourself to serve. Luke 12:35 tells us to “Be dressed and ready to serve.” As a freed slave to sin, we have been given much. God has blessed us with his favor, and whether that’s with possessions, wealth, or faith, much is demanded of us. We are influencers in God’s Kingdom, and the service he calls us to can be as small as holding a door with a gentle smile, or ministering powerfully to a life a thousand miles away. So let’s dress ourselves with the breastplate of faith and love, and the helmet of hope in salvation (1 Thessalonians 5:8).


See people. We’ve got places to go, things to do, and people to see, but let’s focus on the last part – seeing people. Look at their faces, and embrace the fact we share a common Creator whether they believe it or not. Tell them “I see you, you are here.” with an encouraging word (1 Thessalonians 5:11), a simple nod, or some act of kindness that’s beyond reason.


Instead of searching for the “perfect” gift nobody wants, be the real gift someone needs. So here are some tough words – not from me, but from the author of our hope:


Wake up! (Revelation 3:2)


We are no longer ignorant to the Light. He calls us to strengthen what we have been taught (Revelation 3:3). To put into practice a life rich with grace, mercy, and love. The hour is coming and the time will be swift. We can’t afford to put off living our redeemed life for when we feel strong or “right” enough to use it.


He is here to draw upon. To be our oil, our words, and our actions. May we seek him to rescue us from any habits of indifference this season, and the days going forward.


photo: Raye Wortel

photo: Raye Wortel

P.S. If you want to read an amazing book about living above indifference, I highly recommend Love Does by Bob Goff.

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