God has given us each the ability to make things happen. But immaturity and selfishness all too often cause us to waste our strength on shallow and meaningless pursuits. Wisdom and maturity call us to use our strength to bring more life and goodness into the world.
Babies want what they want without any consideration of its impact on others. And as toddlers and young children they freely exercise the agency they have to satisfy their desires. While parents initially provide the discipline and boundaries they need, the goal is still for them to grow into individuals concerned with the wellbeing of others and able to make an impact for good.
And we become essentially boys in bodies of grown men when we don’t continue to mature as adults – taking what strength we have simply to push our own agenda.
This happens, for instance, when we bully or otherwise manipulate others at work, in our relationships, or even sexually to get what we want with little or no consideration of the other.
On the one hand, we might be very successful in what we do – climbing the corporate ladder and winning the admiration of others, at least from a distance. But just beneath the surface is a growing loneliness and impotence.
Like kids who never grow out of their selfishness, people will stop playing with us as well when we don’t learn how to genuinely care for them. And the people that are around are likely just using us as much as we’re using them. Likewise, we kill our ability to make an impact for good when life is just about satisfying our own desires.
In the end, God has given you a strength to make a difference in the lives of others – making the world more beautiful, just, and humane. This is a meaningful use of your strength rather than merely satisfying your own pleasures.