Thousands of people created a bucket list following the release of the 2007 hit movie by the same name, starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman. For those unfamiliar with the film, the bucket list represented a collection of activities and experiences two terminally ill characters wanted to enjoy before their pending deaths. Only the most extreme, adventurous, and extraordinary undertakings made the list; nothing was run-of-the-mill.
For example, they don’t just visit the Great Wall of China; they ride motorcycles on it. They don’t just visit historical sites of local significance; they travel to India and Egypt to admire the Taj Mahal and the Great Pyramids. They don’t settle for visiting a regional peak to climb; they journey to the base of Mount Everest. I could go on but you get the point.
Imagine how much we could impact our communities, nation, and world, if Christians pursued a similar exercise with our faith – a spiritual bucket list, if you will. Only distinctly Christian activities would qualify – those that draw us closer to Christ, advance His kingdom, or fulfill His will. Similar to activities on the secular bucket list, these undertakings would require a significant commitment of time and resources, and involve a degree of adventure, discipline, and courage. Such a process would certainly stretch our faith.
Of course, you should pray for God’s guidance as you create the list. In fact, this exercise might open your heart and eyes to an assignment (or two) God has communicated in the past but you were too busy or distracted to hear. Here are ten possibilities to stimulate your creative juices and ignite your imagination. No doubt readers will think of hundreds more.
1) Memorize an entire chapter of the Bible.
2) Worship with believers in an under-developed country.
3) Spend one summer of your retirement volunteering with an organization that fulfills the Great Commission or meets basic human needs.
4) Start an orphanage overseas.
5) Throw a lavish dinner for the homeless and destitute in your community. Make it an annual event.
6) Share the good news of Jesus with one thousand people and follow-up with them to answer questions and offer encouragement.
7) Fast one day a week on behalf of the persecuted church, an unreached people group, or for revival in this country.
8) Spend your vacation in an area hostile to Christianity and encourage local believers with your presence.
9) Donate twenty percent of your 401(k) this year to fund evangelism efforts in places where Christ’s love and sacrifice are unknown. Then travel to those places and participate in the sponsored activities.
10) Shift careers to work for a Christian or non-profit organization in desperate need of your God-given talents.
Take time this week to begin creating your spiritual bucket list. Add to the list as the Lord lays on your heart more extraordinary activities and assignments. Put the list in a conspicuous place to keep it top of mind. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Act with the same urgency the characters in the movie did to fulfill each item on their list. And don’t be afraid to include activities that seem too enormous, ridiculous, or farfetched. Those are exactly the types of undertakings God honors.