25. How To Counter Complacency

by Sep 11, 20232023

How do we counter or oppose the feeling of being satisfied even when we shouldn’t be? So much about life, the world we live in, and even our own personal development is not what it could be. Sadly, I see many who aren’t serious about improving the world or the kind of person they are. I also submit that making a difference in the world first requires a passion to make a difference in oneself.

There is a topic uppermost on my mind as I write this blog on complacency. It is about personal sacrifice arising from deep devotion to the Lord. The giving of ourselves to the lost, the poor, or the hurting. 

Being Honest With Ourselves

It’s not easy to write a blog like this because I don’t see myself as some super, self-sacrificing individual whose life is so devoted. At the same time, I want to be that person! Calling attention to the reality of what my life actually looks like is convicting! I hope it is to you as well! I believe if you are truly forthright about how you spend your time, it will be.

When we are in the heyday of raising families or building careers, most of us have a very full schedule. However, once the age of retirement is upon us, much changes. Our kids are likely grown and many of our professional jobs have ended.

Herein lies the heart of what I want to challenge. Are we replacing our parenting and careers with a life of leisure and pleasure? Is there any kind of Biblical mandate encouraging us to seek an easy or relaxing lifestyle? Do the words of Scripture not apply to us once retirement hits? I’m asking with sarcasm because you know the answer!

A Biblical View On Complacency

What I DO see in Scripture is a command to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice, which is a true and proper worship to God (Romans 12:1, NIV, paraphrase). Philippians 2:5, tells us to “have the same mindset as Christ Jesus”, and verse 12 says “continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (NIV).  Friends, if we are to apply and obey these words of Scripture, there is no room for complacency!

Sadly, I think many of us swallow the world’s message of comfort and ease. When we allow this philosophy to influence our lives, we inevitably become complacent – even lukewarm in our faith. I confess I have become comfortable, safe, and somewhat self-centered, and this message is as much for me as for you.

But then I remind myself of the charges against the churches found in the first few chapters of Revelation: loveless, compromising, corrupt, dead, or lukewarm. I, for one, don’t want to fall into any of those! And so, this blog.

Allowing our love and passion for Jesus to wither also causes our life to lose its luster. We become a not-so-great version of ourselves. Our days become filled with very few Kingdom-minded activities, and we can so easily fail to give sacrificially to God out of the love He’s given us.

The Choice Before Us

So, what can we do? We get on our knees and rededicate our lives. We reject what the world has to offer and cry out to God to fill our hearts with a desire to serve Him as He deserves to be served. It’s not too late! “The harvest is plentiful” (Matthew 9:37, NIV). God’s purposes need your participation. He wants to do abundantly more than all we could ask or think (Ephesians 3:20, NIV paraphrase)!  

We must just want Him more than the ease of complacency. There has never been a time I’ve devoted myself to something He’s in and been disappointed. What better way to finish your life, than to serve Him unreservedly in your last quarter? I can think of nothing better!