Throughout history men have been plagued with the dreadful thought that there is only one life to live, and it is too short.
To avoid the soul crushing vanity of it all, men repeat the mantra to live the one life you have the best you can. This sentiment is manifest in many popular self-oriented aphorisms:
The Roman poet Horace wrote “Carpe diem” (seize the day).
Henry David Thoreau gave us “Suck out all the marrow of life!”
Albert Einstein advised to “live life to the fullest!”
Joel Osteen titled his bestseller “Live your best life now!”
Drake made popular the hashtag “YOLO.”
The Bible also acknowledges the brevity and vanity of wasted life when it says we should be “redeeming the time” and “what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his soul?”
The Bible does not stop there. It provides an answer to the vanity of life by revealing how souls can be saved; that life can be eternal; and that what gives life meaning is not merely our experiences or adventures (which are in themselves vain), but God.
This is why the missionary C.T. Studd wrote:
“Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Justin “one life” Johnson