I'm not talking about those tragedies where someone dies too young, too soon, or doing something reckless that shouldn't have turned out like this. They do, indeed, seem like such an unnecessary waste of what could have been great, long and glorious lives. But it's not what I mean.
I'm talking about the waste that's happened today. In my life. Possibly in yours too. The time I've spent on things that didn't really matter, the thoughts I've let meander through my mind that have distracted me from what I should have been doing, the opportunities I didn't make space for because I reckoned I was too busy. What an utter waste.
I happen to have been reading a little about the subject of 'truth' today, having come across it in someone's autobiography. The author had studied philosophy, and his reading of Plato, Socrates and the like had led him to conclude that there is no thing as absolute truth. Apply it to my own life, and then my 'evidence' of how I have wasted time become nothing more than one-sided opinions - my 'waste' is another man's 'gain', or some other platitude-nonsense-speak. As a Christian, however, I can't accept that truth is only an abstract concept, to be wielded at one's peril. Jesus said that He is the Truth. He also said that He is the Way, and the Life. The three are interlinked - like a three-cord rope, useless if one of the cords is missing. And if I line up my life, the way I have chosen to spend my time, even just today's actions, with Jesus' Truth, there are some gaping holes. And it feels like it. I don't feel satisfied with the day, even though so much of it was good and fulfilling. I'm left looking at the holes and, quite predictably, feeling rather empty.
That leaves two options - stay here, staring at the holes, or turn back to the One who sat one day by a well, telling a woman the Truth about her rather colourful life to date, and using that conversation to set her free. Because Jesus never uses who He is to condemn, even though that is what this bear of little brain feels should be the logical response. He uses it to set me free.