Once I looked it up I realized I already knew what it meant in another context.
Dissipate -- The rain dissipated.
The rain will dissipate soon.
The rain needs to dissipate.
The dye dissipated in the water.
I'm sure you do (I find that my readers are a whole lot smarter than I am).
But what about using dissipate in reference to your life?
This is what confused me.
Jesus says in Luke 21:24a, "Be on guard, that your hearts may not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life,"
What the heck does dissipation mean in this context? This is what I had to look up. What I found out was so darn interesting.
From Thesaurus.com I got this great list of synonyms (I had to look up how to spell synonym too -- this 45 year old brain has holes in it!):
squandering of money, energy or resources; be wasteful with, blow, burn up, consume, deplete, dump, fritter away, indulge oneself, lavish, misspend, misuse, run through, squander, throw away, trifle away, use up, waste.
Golly, I read that and thought -- I've done that with some of my life. Squandering of energy really speaks to me because I have a limited amount everyday. I have to choose what I will use that energy on. If I use too much my 10 year old gets after me. She'll say, "Mom, you wore yourself out again!"
And she'd be right.
From this verse in Luke I find that I'm not supposed to do that. Energy is as important than our money and resources. So is time. Exchange the word energy for the word time. The "squandering of time."
Lots of people do this. We act like we have all the time in the world when in fact we don't. This might be your last day on earth. This might be your last hour. I saw this with my daughter Maggie. At 11 a.m. March 19 I was quizzing her on her spelling words. Three hours later she quit breathing and never woke up.
Listen though -- only you and God know what is squandering your time or money or resources or energy. It's so okay to enjoy yourself, to enjoy a laugh or two; or whatnot. And it is perfectly fine to go on vacation (spending too much time at work may be squandering your time).
Here's a good question to ask if it worth your time -- is it building relationships? Is it strengthening your relationship with God? With other? Even with yourself (in the way that it helps you become the person God created you to be)?
Or is it distracting you from really living? Is it mindless?
Don't waste time. Please. I'm so thankful for every second I had with my Moo (that was Maggie's nickname here at home). I don't regret one second (yet, I do wish that last day with her I would have held her on my lap until she had to go).
Think where you could be in your relationship with God if you begin today -- I am so thankful that in the fall of 1987 I started reading scripture regularly. In Feb of 1988 I began reading it every day. Since then I don't think there's been a day I haven't. And the wonderful thing about this is that how it has transformed my mind and heart and entire life because it isn't just another book. It is living.
OK. I'm really going on tangents this morning, but I have a challenge for you if you have the courage to take it: take up a Bible and read it every day for 30 days and see what happens. I am very partial to The Message. It isn't the one I read every day, but boy, Eugene H. Peterson gave the world a gift with The Message. Here's a copy you can get for under $6 on Amazon. With shipping it will cost you $10.
Try it. And if you do, let me know what you think after those 30 days. I'd love to hear your thoughts.