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Don't Waste Your Life

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  27,933 ratings  ·  838 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 ...more
Paperback, 191 pages
Published May 1st 2003 by Crossway Books
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BOOKCLUB9 I liked it, i like these subjects, I recently red Aurora by G.M.J. also makes you think and realise much, but for all age groups. Cover of this books …moreI liked it, i like these subjects, I recently red Aurora by G.M.J. also makes you think and realise much, but for all age groups. Cover of this books seems strict, but as I am religious, I understand, but many would stepp away. But great read!(less)

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Average rating 4.12  · 
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 ·  27,933 ratings  ·  838 reviews

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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
Jul 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Mar 16, 2016 rated it did not like it
I'll admit I couldn't finish this book. But from the beginning, I was deeply disturbed by its pretentiousness:

"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 shells. . . .' Picture them before
Natalie Vellacott
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian-living
I'm not a huge Piper fan which in some circles is tantamount to blasphemy. I don't agree with his Christian hedonism principle--it seems to me to be self-focused rather than God focused.

However, this book is a helpful reminder that our lives should be used for the glory of God. We are always on duty in His service and cannot afford to waste our time.

Oct 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
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
Noai Leidenfrost
Feb 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Feb 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2011
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
Harper Nicole
Apr 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
You know, this is one of those books where you put an inspiring quote at the top of the review, but there are just TOO MANY in this book!

I don't know how many sermons I've heard of my pastor's where he used the snippet on the back of the book as an example. Yeah. I loved this book. It got me out of a rough time and taught me so much. I feel like this is a must-read for every Christian! The wisdom of John Piper is incredible! I loved every moment about it! It will change your life!

Thanks so much
Addy S.
Dec 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christian
Absolutely incredible. John Piper never ceases to amaze me.
Jan 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If Christ is an all-satisfying treasure and promises to provide all our needs, even through famine and nakedness, then to live as though we had all the same values as the world would betray him.

An excellent start to 2017, and a great companion piece to another work I'm reading currently, The Cost of Discipleship , by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

I first discovered John Piper just over a decade ago, while working at a 3-day concert event with a local radio station. One of the many other stations was g
Beth McCallum
I have no motivation to finish this book. I made it about 56% through and then lost all will. Although I'm super Piper's intentions are good and that the overall message of this book would be purposeful to some, I find John Piper condemning, rude and a bit self-righteous. He only talks about his own experiences to show an example of what it's like to really live for God and I'm not a fan of that. Other people have written good reviews on his condemnation of the couple that like collecting shells ...more
Jan 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Silvia Maria
Jan 10, 2021 rated it did not like it
I know this is a hot take but pls hear me out!!
Disclaimer: I recognize that I have zero credibility but here I am writing my opinion anyways hahaha.
The points and topics discussed in this book are GOOD and TRUE! In fact, I really would have enjoyed this if it were in the form of a podcast or sermon or lecture etc. But this is a book. I strongly believe that there is a big need for good & talented Christian writers. The art of storytelling (or the art of engaging the reader) should still be a t
David Newton
Jun 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christianity
It’s so refreshing to be confronted by Piper’s lack of sympathy for Christians preoccupied with comfort and security. I say that as someone who needs to hear this message regularly. Yet his focus is always on Christ, providing guardrails keeping me from pursuing righteousness through asceticism.

His primary admonition is not to exercise stronger self-denial and discipline, but to have open eyes to a far greater glory worth living and dying for. I’m thankful for someone who has this vision for th
Aug 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian-living, own
I started this book back in '07 when I was looking for answers in my calling. God used it to verify to me that I did need to go to seminary. As soon as I got that answer, I stopped reading the book. I'm not sure why.

It might have been so that God could use it to help me at this point in my journey. It was a great reminder that Christ is the blazing center and if I work for towards anything else it is a wasted life.
Mar 30, 2008 rated it really liked it
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
Jul 23, 2011 rated it liked it
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
Riley Shenk
Dec 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The first half is very dense but definitely good. The second half was incredibly thought provoking
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian, for-school
WOW. this book was so powerful and blunt and convicting. definitely forced me to reevaluate how i spend my time.

definitely would recommend. :)
Mar 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great look at what it means to live the true Christian life.
Ashley Bogner
Well, that was convicting. Highly recommended.
Jonathan Sussex
Sep 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian
Enjoyed this book, it was very challenging, I pray that I can apply some of it
Adam Watkins
Jan 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
“This is God’s design for all of world history, that people from all nations, and tribes, and languages come to worship and treasure Christ above all things.”

I think Piper gets at two main questions from this truth:
1) What are you doing to make Christ worshipped and treasured above all things in your own life?
2) What are you doing to make Christ worshipped and treasured above all things in the lives of all nations, tribes, and languages?

Don’t waste your life. Don’t waste it.
Dec 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
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
Apr 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I read this with a group of my friends in Croatian. I cannot recommend this book enough. I urge all believers to read it. It will make you examine your life - your priorities, goals, aspirations, etc. I plan to read it again, but this time with my teenage girls.
nerd culture is mainstream now. [jo]
RTC when I’m not exhausted and in pain
Edit: yeah, I realized that’s going to be never so I’ll just write the review now.

I waffled between giving this one star, two stars, or three stars. As you can see, I finally decided on two stars.
I’m independent, fundamental, and Baptist. Piper is Calvinist and -tries- to claim the name Baptist. To be honest, my dislike of this book has nothing to do with his Calvinism, but everything to do with his other doctrines.
Like seriously, if you want Calvinism, plea
Chase Luka
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The profound reality of what is to treasure, namely Christ, is so easy to miss for our fallen minds. I thank God for the man he has placed to explain this biblically, precisely, and lovingly.

Piper does so well at laying the glory of God in front of the reader saying, "here He is! Look at what you desire! Look at what will satisfy that!". He lays out such a beautiful display of why we should seek the glory of God in every chapter and every thought. This caused me to examine my satisfaction in so
Mazzy Mitchell
It was ok. There's really nothing new in it, and I'm not sure what to blame it on, but I've gotten all of this from other books or resources (Desiring God, John Piper's website, for one). It might be a more engaging read for some but I found it rather dry. Not to say that its message is dry, but the presentation is lackluster to me. I've never particularly enjoyed Piper's writing anyway. I think he could state his point more simply in a lot of cases. ...more
Loretta Marchize
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another school book, I read it a couple weeks ago in June but don't remember what day. (we went on vacation right after I finished it, so I never reviewed it on Goodreads)
It was hard to finish because it didn't always keep my attention very well, but I thought it was a good book.
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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 Bethel Co

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