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“nobody cares about you after 25”

That’s a big statement. Honestly it disturbs me. I have this understanding that I think is how followers of Jesus are to operate and this doesn’t fit. This was a statement that Trent said while we were talking Tuesday night. I got a lot out of our time with Trent. He’s a great example of a guy who is living a great life following Christ. But that statement bothered me.

It’s not that I disagree. I asked him if that is the way it is supposed to be and he just said “that’s the way it is”. I think in practice he is right, Trent’s a realist and I think that is reality.

But it doesn’t mean it has to be that way. To tell the truth, I still want to be cared for and care for others. I want to be loved and to love. I’ve heard a local say for a long time that in the final analysis the thing that matters in life is who we love and who loves us. Now that sounds more like the way of Jesus that I know. It also sounds like what I want.

I recently spent some time with a friend and mentor who was encouraging me in the faith. I was talking about some particular relationship issues that I was dealing with. It’s been a a painful situation and has produced a lot of struggle in me. Very early in the conversation I was struck that the root of the problem was simply that I wasn’t loving the other parties.

Dallas describes love as intending the best for someone. This seems like a simplistic way of viewing love, but as definitions go I think it stands nicely. When I look for the best of the other person I am willfully looking for what is best for them and that is truly what we all want isn’t it?

When I realized the position I was in I was able to change my attitude and realize that the problem was that I was really looking out for my best and not the best of the others in the relationship. It doesn’t make it easy but it does make it clear. Clarity means a lot.

So what does this have to do with the fact that nobody cares about you after 25? For me, it means that I will stand against that reality as is currently is. I still want to be loved and to love deeply. That takes a lot of effort and time and energy. That takes extra-ordinary effort really. But it is more of the way that I want to live than any other way.

When Jesus said “love your enemies” he wasn’t saying that as a punishment or consequence to being a Christian. It isn’t that when you’re a Christian you have to do these difficult things that no one on earth would really want to do. He is saying that loving others is the best way to live. Period.

I want to be a man like that. At 25, 45, 75 or 105. I still want to love and be loved. I’m going to do it.

Greg

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I am the CEO of Blue Ocean Ideas, a creative agency in Baltimore, Maryland. My job is to clarify the strategy and take care of my team. I am married to the beautiful Elise Rittler and we have four great kids. When I’m not at Blue Ocean Ideas or with my family I am riding a bike, running, playing ultimate frisbee, eating, or sleeping. There is a little more about me here.

One Response to ““nobody cares about you after 25””

By Looch - 6 July 2008

I’ve been thinking about what it means to work 6 days a week. Trent had talked about our culture having more idle time by only working 5 days a week. I think we need to be careful in our culture of money, success, and power. We reward extra work with money and success. And that can make the extra work unhealthy if that’s our motivation. At the beginning of spring when I went back to work I thought alot about this. I decided that I was going to be okay with working 6 days a week. My thought was that most of the world does this, thus I should be okay with it too. It was hard on Friday nights to not go out late and then on Saturday nights to feel tired. It was a little freeing though during the week, to know that I had another day to work and not be as stressed about getting things done in 5 days. I did find myself being more conscious of what I did with my free time. Do I read or watch tv? Do I spend time with others or withdraw? There are other ways to spend that 6th day as well. What if we worked 5 days a week and took the 6th day to volunteer or give that time away. In the end I do want to be known for who I love and who loves me. I might be exhausted from it, but I want to be ok with that. To take things one step further. Our lifestyle of working 5 days a week and wanting things for cheap and at good quality forces the people making these products and performing these services to work longer and for less than fair wages. We choose ourselves and our comfort over theirs. This ties into love being “intending the best for someone”, whether we know them or not.

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