Over the past few months, I’ve seen many of my Christian friends outraged about the popular YOLO slogan. And for good reason. It stands for “You Only Live Once” and the idea is to live it up—s*x, drugs, parties, etc.–have fun, and take stupid risks.
It’s a sad thing, but it represents passion and commitment to a lifestyle. We should be so committed to the cause of Christ.
Ways we can (and should) live out this concept in our lives:
You only live once. Everyone you meet will only live once. We have a limited amount of time to share the good news of salvation. Paul talks about using wisdom in our interactions with those who aren’t saved. (Col 4:5-6) Sometimes witnessing can be hard or awkward, but we can’t waste our time here. We are called in this passage to “make the most of every opportunity.” Everyone I know should hear the salvation story from my lips.
We only get so much time. Don’t waste it on drama and senseless arguments. Focus on loving others. Focus on having peace in your own life (Romans 12:18). Don’t sweat the small stuff, and treasure your relationships instead, recognizing the brevity of this life. If you’re married, make sure your spouse knows he (or she) is loved and treasured. There will come a time, unexpectedly, when you won’t get another chance to make it right.
A few weeks ago, a tragedy shook my community, reminding us all of the brevity of life. You only live once and your children only live once, so I think this question is worth asking: If today were your last day with your children, what would you want it to look like?
I’m not talking about going crazy a la Queen Latifah in Last Holiday. I’m talking about the every day. Having a little more patience, really stopping to see and hear your children, and not just hurriedly glance their way. I’m talking about reading “one more book” every once in a while, and taking the time for hugs and cuddles more often. Stop what you’re doing sometimes to color, play cars, blocks, or barbies. Saying “yes” a little more often, even when you want to say “no.”
My deepest desire is that I can get better at this, and go to bed with less regrets every night. Sometimes, I feel like Paul when he says he does the things he hates and doesn’t do the things he wants to do (Romans 7:15). But I know with the Holy Spirit’s guidance and continual help, I can move beyond that and to glorifying God in my parenting and life.
In our Everyday Actions
Knowing my time on earth is short makes me want to work harder to build a lasting legacy while I’m here. Solomon talks about this a lot in Ecclesiastes. Never read it? Allow me to sum it up for you—Life is meaningless. And in worldly pursuits, it is. But, in the end, he says this:
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all.
(Ecclesiastes 12: 13)
Worldly success is meaningless. The only thing that really matters is serving God with our lives.
Knowing how limited my time is makes me want to make the most of it. We can’t afford to get caught up in meaningless pursuits. There is too much at stake! Everything we do should be focused on Christ and His purposes. Many of you reading this might think this is extreme, but we don’t have time to waste. Our lives are but a vapor. (James 4:13-17).
You only live once. So make it count. Live out the things that matter—serving God, loving others, kingdom work, leaving a lasting legacy, not the meaningless things that wise King Solomon speaks of in Ecclesiastes.
We were born with a craving. And all the drugs, parties, s*x, booze, and chocolate in the world will never satisfy that craving. Only Christ can do that, and it’s only through Him that we can really make our short lives count.