Monday, February 24, 2014

All Or Nothing: YOLO

The acronym YOLO (you only live once) is used all over social media. We use it in a joking way most of the time, but if you really stop to think about it, this is a very sobering statement. “YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE!” We have got one life. One opportunity. One shot at not wasting our lives.

Nobody wants to come to the end of their life and say, “I wasted it.” We all want our lives to count for something. We want to live a meaningful life, not a meaningless one. So what, then, qualifies a life as meaningful? What are the criteria for a life well lived; a life not wasted?

Well, according to the world, the goal in life is to succeed at a career, have a family, retire with enough money to live comfortably, and maybe go a vacation now and then. As soon as someone graduates high school they begin to climb the ladder of “success.” Despite what the world tells us, this is not a life well lived, this is a life wasted.

 If we look at people who the Bible says were successful, we see people who didn’t know where their next meal was going to come from. We see people who were thrown in prison, killed, and persecuted for living for Christ. Christ himself never had money. The Word says that “the Son of Man had no place to lay his head.” He didn’t even know where he was going to sleep every night. The world will tell you that unless you gain wealth and prestige, you will never live a meaningful life, but that is not what makes a great life.

The only way to live a great life is to live for Jesus Christ and his glory. The only way to be truly great is proclaim the name of the only great God.

John Piper says, “The opposite of wasting your life is living life by a single God-exalting, soul-satisfying passion.” When we look for satisfaction in anything but Christ, we waste our lives.

So let’s go back to YOLO. You only live once. We have one life. One chance to live totally abandoned to Christ for the glory of God. What do you find your satisfaction in? What do you feed on? John Piper says in his book Don’t Waste Your Life, “What you love determines what you feel shame about. If you love for men to make much of you, you will feel shame when they don’t. But if you love for men to make much of Christ, then you will feel shame if he is belittled on your account.”

Everyday people get up, go to work, come home, watch TV, and go to bed. The next day is no different. Their everyday is squandered away as they live to make much of themselves. Athletes work to make much of their ability. Businessmen live to make much of themselves through their wealth. This is the black hole that this generation, and every generation to come, is headed for when we seek our own greatness. When we come to the realization that “To know Christ and to make him known” is the greatest endeavor that anyone could ever embark upon, we live a life of purpose.

            As Francis Chan said,

Our greatest fear should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter.”

Success is not marked by the number of zeros on your paycheck, or the records you break, or even the good things that you do. When we stand before God, the only things that will last are the things that we did for Christ and his glory. 

So as you read this, don’t be satisfied with the low aim of making much of yourself, but stir up the passion to make much of the only one who is worthy of praise, Jesus Christ. You only live once; don’t waste it.


                “You get one pass at life. That’s all. Only one. And the lasting measure of that life is Jesus Christ.”
 – John Piper