Last year, Hollywood released a movie called Everest. The movie is based on a true story of a group of people who set out to climb the tallest mountain on the planet. As you can imagine, in this dramatic story of struggle, defeat, glory, and tragedy, some characters made it to the top, while others did not. Some made it back to the bottom, others didn’t. Some returned in one piece, while others were not as fortunate. As I watched the movie, I found myself asking the question, “Why do we climb mountains?

A High Price to Pay

The group spent $65,000 for this grand expedition. These were, of course, not casual climbers. They had all climbed many mountains before. In fact, these climbers were very accomplished and experienced mountaineers who had conquered some of the world’s tallest peaks. They also had a professional guide service prepare, train, guide, and assist them in their quest to scale Mount Everest.

But For What?

I think the most depressing thing about the film was not all the people who didn’t survive, but the haunting question that remained after the credits rolled: What was it all for?

  • Consider the Risks Involved. One in every four climbers who challenge Everest die trying.
  • Consider the Cost. All the money invested in such an expedition, all the time away from family, all the effort, all the risk… That is a high price to pay for a moment of adrenaline rush, a snapshot to put on your wall, or some sense of accomplishment, as if climbing a mountain actually acheives something of real, lasting value.

My guess is you and I will never try to climb Mount Everest, but every time we make a significant investment on a project with such high stakes, we must ask ourselves the question: What is all this for?

What Is All This For?

This should really be the question we ask ourselves in any situation. Every day we make significant investments of our time, financial resources, emotional energy, and all we are and have. We may not climb actual mountains, but we are constantly taking risks. For what?

I guess the answer to this question depends on our priorities in life. Are we giving ourselves to things that ultimately don’t matter or matter very little? Do we invest ourselves in a quest for money, fame, or position, all of which matter very little in the big picture and won’t last long? Do we invest our lives in the pursuit of pleasure, prestige, or popularity? Are those really the things that matter, that fulfill, that last?

Take God’s Viewpoint

Scripture provides the answer for us:

The world and its desires pass away, but whoever
does the will of God lives forever.
1 John 2:17

We are told the world and everything in it will pass away. Any investment or risk we take for things pertaining to this world will only temporarily pay off. On the other hand, doing the will of God brings eternity, and whatever we invest in His Kingdom has eternal value. This is what makes for a wise investment of our lives and resources.

by Jimmy Aycock