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Don't Waste Your Life

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  17,818 ratings  ·  479 reviews

John Piper writes, “I will tell you what a tragedy is. I will show you how to waste your life. Consider this story from the February 1998 Reader’s Digest: A couple ‘took early retirement from their jobs in the Northeast five years ago when he was 59 and she was 51. Now they live in Punta Gorda, Florida, where they cruise on their 30-foot trawler, play softball and collect

Kindle Edition, 196 pages
Published April 7th 2008 (first published January 1st 2003)
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Neil Steinwand Short, excellent book for young adults (18-29) and others seeking a purpose for their lives. Shows the wastefulness of a materialistic ambition and…moreShort, excellent book for young adults (18-29) and others seeking a purpose for their lives. Shows the wastefulness of a materialistic ambition and the joy of seeking a life and purpose from God's perspective.(less)
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David Gregg
It's a great book. It does what it does well, but it doesn't deal with the possible (or even, likely) reaction that people might have to it. That is, to draw their sense of approval and validation from how successful they feel they are at "not wasting" their life. If they aren't what they consider to be successful at this, then they will feel less approved or loved by God (even if they know intellectually that isn't true). So if they aren't "successful," then they will be depressed. If they are ...more
This book will hit folks hard, for the better or for the worse...,

I apologize for this long review. I feel very passionate about the subject covered in this book and I feel that I would be amiss if I did not state my humble opinion, pointed as it may be. So please forgive the loquacious effort that I humbly offer in hopes that others will read this book and find themselves changed for the better as I have.

I found it very interesting to read through the fifty-something reviews on this book before
I so enjoyed reading this while in Kenya. Beth Mixon, Sara's good friend who gave up her bed so I had a place to sleep, had this book on her shelf. Since it had been recommended to me by my son Ben and I have enjoyed Piper's work before I went for it. The chapter on "Risk is Right" was superb and reminded me that to risk it all for the kingdom pays BIG TIME. Not a bad return, given the current market crash. I am quite certain that when I think of risk I am thinking of different things than Ben. ...more
This should be called... "Don't Waste Your Life (on this Book)". It took me about five tries to finish. It's hard to review because nothing struck out to me, hence I cannot remember anything from it.
Noai Leidenfrost
Amazing! everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy and be challenged by this book. Life changing

some quotes:
"God created me - and you - to live with a single, all-embracing, all-transforming passion - namely, a passion to glorify God by enjoying and displaying his supreme excellence in all the spheres of life." - p31

The opposite of wasting your life is to live by a single, soul-satisfying passion for the supremacy of God in all things." - p43

"the people that make a durable difference in the
I can't bring myself to finish this book. I don't want to waste my life on reading it.

While I think the idea of the message is good, the actual message and delivery is not. I found it difficult to understand in places and very repetitive. I'm pretty sure it's geared toward new young Christians, but there are so many other books that do a better job at presenting this message.

I was also feeling a sort of condemnation or legalism that I couldn't quite put my finger on to explain until I read someo
I don't know if I can review this book justly. It's 189 pages, but a thoroughly tough book to read. Piper writes in such a way as to compel the reader to ponder each sentence, mulling over the implications for your own life.

I would love to include some quotes, but in doing so I'd have to omit others equally heart-wrenching. Some of the chapter titles that spoke to me loudest were Boasting Only in the Cross, the Blazing Center of the Glory of God; Magnifying Christ Through Pain and Death; The Goa
Go to the best school you can. Get the job that makes the most money possible. Retire early. Spend the rest of your life "Doing what you want to do"-----collecting antiques, going on cruises, woodworking.

None of these things are bad in and of themselves. But is that all life is intended to be? Is that the way God designed living our life here on earth to look like?

John Piper, in the book Don't Waste Your Life, takes issue with the prevailing thoughts that life is primarily for our enjoyment. Ins
What I learned:
1. You/I can not love man or honor God without doing both.
2. You/I Don't waste your life by where you work but how and why you work.
3. The Balance of being a merciful church at home and church planting: The authenticity of each depends much on the authenticity of the other. It is unauthentic to presume to send what we don't have and unauthentic to have a treasure and not send it.
4. God is most glorified in us when we are satisfied in him.

Summary: pg 177: You don't have to be a mi
Josh Morgan
This review first appeared on my blog, Jacob's Café.

John Piper is a prolific writer who people seem to either love or hate. In December, I had the opportunity to review his latest book (in audiobook format), which made me into a non-fan of Piper. I cross-post my reviews on other sites, including Amazon. It was quite interesting to see how passionately people defended Piper in response to my review. And how they review the usefulness of a review and people's comments based on their agreement with
This book got me by the preface. I originally picked it up at the library, b/c I RARELY purchase a book. Well, I got so sucked in to it that I had to buy it and sit with a pencil or highlighter b/c so much of this book hit home.

I'm the woman with a college degree not being used, work experience in telecom which barely exists anymore (and which I'm terribly underexperienced for), a mom wanting to be here for my kids--their homework challenges, their activities, their lives--a substitute teacher
I can't actually rate this because I didn't finish, but I wanted to acknowledge that I did get half-way through. I gained a lot of insight into the Bible about God's glory, our glory in God's glory, and many other VERY important aspects of the Christian faith. But it was just too over my head and I was not getting most of it. It took me over a month to even get half-way through. This is the second time I've had to stop reading a John Piper book because of this same thing. It's too complex for me ...more
Piper discusses the rigorous call of the Cross. If we are to be true Christians we must give all. It's a life of sacrifice for the One who sacrificed for us. Piper is one of my favorite theologians.
In order to give the most accurate review, I've included some of my favorite excerpts from the book...I hope they reel you in to a very worthwhile read! I highly recommend Chapter 8 "Making Much of Christ from 8 to 5."

"If you don't people to God for everlasting joy, you don't love. You waste your life." (p. 35)

"...The way we honor Christ in death is to treasure Jesus above the gift of life, and the way we honor Christ in life is to treasure Jesus above life's gifts." (p. 71)

"The world is not im
This book suffers from Piper's tendency to fill 200 pages when 30 would have illustrated his points sufficiently, but the points in Don't Waste Your Life are terrific, and it's well worth the read. Mostly, the book challenges the reader again and again to live deliberately for God's glory instead of wasting life pursuing anything else. I love Piper's exhaustive Biblical citations and his presentation of rarely referenced milestones in the history of international missions. I also love that Piper ...more
Dottie Parish
John Piper’s book inspired and informed my mind and heart about the danger of Christians wasting their life rather than being intentional about how we spend it. Unless we lose our life – we waste our life. Risks are worth it and necessary. This is Piper’s thesis throughout the book. His detailed application of what it means to be “crucified” with Christ yet live for him gave me new understanding – both intellectually and emotionally of the profound and difficult meaning of this Scripture.

John Gardner
I guess you could say that, for me, this is the book that started it all. That is to say, for all the reading I do now of books relating to faith and theology, this is a relatively late addition to my life. I’ve always been a big reader, but prior to 2003, I pretty much stayed in the realm of fiction, with the occasional history book thrown in.

In June of 2003, however, the man who was discipling me challenged me to dedicate two of my greatest loves — music and reading — to the Lord. He told me t
Josh Wilson
Apr 06, 2013 Josh Wilson rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: formation, theology
John Piper, Don’t Waste Your Life

In 189 pages, Don’t Waste Your Life summarizes the ministry and mission of Pastor John Piper, one of the most influential pastor’s of our generation. It is a powerful message, passionately presented, by an authentic leader. I have read the book on numerous occasions and have never done so without being challenged and moved.
Piper opens the book by describing, somewhat poetically, his search for the meaning of life. He chronicles his personal journey and reveals
Very challenging. I would put this on my list of books every Christian should read. It is a book I will read again in different seasons of life. We read this with our small group Bible study and we each wrote a summary afterwards on what we learned from the book. Here is what I wrote:

I don't want to waste my life by getting wrapped up in the daily grind and forgetting why I'm here on earth. I don't want to measure success by how early Mark can retire and how many countries I can travel to befor
This book did a good job of shaking me out of my self-involved thinking - reminding me that it is far better to risk and suffer loss for following Christ than to die having lived comfortably without him.

As other reviewers noted, chapters 7 and 8 were the high-point of this book, describing living for Jesus in a purposeful and urgent way (war-time living) regardless of where we work or what we do.

The book started off and ended slowly for me, but I got drawn in at the end of chapter 5, when Pipe
I finished this a while back and haven't reviewed it because I am still processing it. This book was given to me in Feb 2005 while we are in Oman. I read a couple of chapters and then put it on my bedside table (after we returned to Texas, it went on my current bedside table that has stood in five apt/house since then). The other day I just had the desire to read it and was so glad that I did.
JP isn't the best writer and kinda has a CS Lewis quality of stating something very deep in easy to und
John Piper has become my new favorite Christian authors for many reasons- one of which is that he makes all of his books available online for FREE! Check out for all of the resources. Don't Waste Your Life was written quite a few years before David Platt's Radical and has the same themes woven throughout. As Christians, our lives are meant to be lived FULLY for Jesus. The way to ensure you waste your life is spending all of your time, talents, and treasures on earthly pursuit ...more
Joan Verhoef
Listened to this book on a road trip. Wished Piper had read it. Found it difficult to understand.
Bendick Ong
And you would think life is easy for a christian hedonist. This book tells us the christian joy is one with great cost. It debunks the myth that doing everything is ok as long as you claim you have done it for the glory of God - a doctrine central to the protestant faith yet greatly misunderstood and widely misused.

This book is a call for christians to choose risk instead of comfort, to choose spiritual over material, to choose the things that are more important in life.

It's piper's call toward
Wesley Wade
Are you a new Christian, or a newly-returned-to-your-faith Christian, that likes to think deeply about societal norms and motives? Maybe you're agnostic and just want to feel justified in one thing over the other, just enough to push you over that edge and delve into exploration. John Piper is deep, and he is bold. You should pick up this book, and just go for it... you will either be righteously convicted, or turn away with a few penetrating questions about human character, specifically your ch ...more
Ian Major
A very profitable read for every Christian! So helpful in the challenges it brings to our natural inclinations for the easy life.

A few quotes:

'We waste our lives when we do not pray and think and dream and plan and work toward magnifying God in all spheres of life.'

'Life is wasted if we do not grasp the glory of the cross, cherish it for the treasure that it is, and cleave to it as the highest price of every pleasure and the deepest comfort in every pain.'

'The sunbeams of blessing in our lives a
Garrett Cash
The idea of possibly wasting my life away on things that don't matter is enormously frightening to me, probably more than anything else in fact. I'm thankful to God that John Piper wrote this book not only for myself personally but for the many people out there who suffer a meaningless life, even as "Christians" that are appallingly fruitless. I pray that my life won't end up like that, and I confess I'm prone to being anxious, thinking that what I want to do is not the path that Christ wants me ...more
This is the kind of book I feel I should reread every so often to remind me not to "waste my life." I've listened to a lot of John Piper's sermons, so, to me this book feels like a condensed compilation of some of his best sermons. It does a good job of enjoining Christians not to waste their lives whilst addressing the common misconceptions of what this can mean (i.e. not everyone should quit their job and become a missionary/pastor).

The Bible says "You are not your own, for you were bought a price. So glorify God in your body". He has written this book to help us taste these words as sweet instead of bitter and boring. He said we belong in one of two groups: Either we are a Christian, or God is now calling us or we are not. He says if we picked up this book that God is at work in our life. He says pursuing God's glory will be virtually the same as pursuing joy. This book is about how to avoid a wasted life. I feel too that ...more
Josh Wilson
This book gets better with every chapter; chapter 7 hit me hard. I love that the final chapter is a "prayer." Very poetic and appropriate way to end a subject of this magnitude. Lots of good material for lessons, preaching.. but more importantly, for life. It's worth reading again.
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John Piper is founder and teacher of and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. For 33 years, he served as senior pastor at Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

He grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, and studied at Wheaton College, Fuller Theological Seminary (B.D.), and the University of Munich (D.theol.). For six years, he taught Biblical Studies at Bethe
More about John Piper...
Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist The Passion of Jesus Christ The Pleasures of God: Meditations on God's Delight in Being God Let the Nations Be Glad!: The Supremacy of God in Missions When I Don't Desire God: How to Fight for Joy

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“It is about the greatness of God, not the significance of man. God made man small and the universe big to say something about himself.” 119 likes
“All heroes are shadows of Christ” 116 likes
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