Beware: Watch Your Lifestyle

Beware: Watch Your Lifestyle

Beware: Watch Your Lifestyle.

“Be careful! Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that Day catch you unawares, like a trap. For that Day will come upon everyone living on the earth. Keep alert at all times.”  (Luke 21:34-35).

Jesus gave His audience a number of fair warnings. Be Careful. Watch out. Be on your guard. Beware. Take heed to yourselves lest you develop a lifestyle that weighs your heart down, that dulls your spiritual senses, that makes you a slave to your appetites.  Jesus here highlighted the dangerous game we play when w live a certain way without thinking of the consequences.

The first danger is what is meant by dissipation… carousing, reveling, excess partying. The Greek word used actually refers to the headache caused by a hangover, by excessive drinking. Dissipation is to indulge in pleasure to the point of harming oneself, to the point of squandering one’s life. Jesus is saying that excessive partying will deaden our spirit and dull our heart, so that one would not be ready for the Day of Judgment. That Final Day will arrive and it’ll be too late to change or undo the damage.

The second danger is drunkenness. Watch out that you don’t become a drunkard, Jesus says. Be careful that you don’t develop a pattern of drunkenness. If you do, you might not be ready for the Final Day, which for many might be the most sobering event in history. Jesus is saying, don’t drink to excess, or you’ll be too disoriented to recognize Jesus when He returns. If drinking to excess becomes a habit, Jesus says, do your best to break that habit before it becomes your spiritual downfall.

The third danger mentioned by Jesus is the cares, the anxieties of this life. In other words, are we preoccupied with pursuing all the pleasures that life has to offer? Are we wrapped up with the worries about this life? Are we living without thinking about anything but ourselves? Are we paranoid about having the basic necessities, and then become constantly occupied with pursuing more than we need? When Jesus taught the parable of the sower and seeds in Luke 8, He mentioned a similar idea. He said that the plant choked by thorns was the person who operates in life choked by the cares of mortal existence. And so, suffocated with the preoccupations of this life and not the kingdom, the plant does not grow into maturity. If all we care about are the concerns of this life, we will never mature spiritually. We will not bear fruit.

What would we consider to be the “cares of this life?”

  • Perhaps it’s being overly worried about status, image, possessions, or power;
  • Maybe the pursuit of pleasures would include entertainment, social media, cable news, or social engagements;
  • Perhaps the cares of this life have us running around so much in hyperactivity, our daily lives so busy with the occupations of this life, that we haven’t let our soul catch up with our body;
  • Maybe the cares of this life have us preoccupied with resentment, anger or unforgiveness;
  • Perhaps our major concerns in life are earthbound, with no thought of investing our personal resources, our intellectual and spiritual and emotional strength, in matters of the Kingdom.

These three dangers mentioned by Jesus have a way of sneaking up on a person, gradually. We would be wise to follow the instructions of Jesus, watch out for these three trapdoors in your life. Be careful that you don’t fall through and are not ready for the Big Day. Jesus gave us fair warning.