Summary: We only have one life to live: What are we doing to make it count for eternity?


INTRO TO TOPIC: Who knows what Carpe diem means? What about Memento mori?

• Carpe diem: “Seize the day.” And Memento mori: “Remember that you will die.”

• There is a new one popular in youth culture: YOLO: You only live once. Same concept.

• “LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered, and that my life is fleeing away.” (Psalm 39:4, NLT).

OPENING TEXT: “28 Then one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, perceiving that He had answered them well, asked Him, "Which is the first commandment of all?" 29 Jesus answered him, "The first of all the commandments is: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' This is the first commandment. 31 And the second, like it, is this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these."” (Mark 12:28-31, NKJV).

• We are to love God and people with our heart, mind and strength.


“Guard your heart with all diligence, for out of it flow the issues of life.” (Prov. 4:23).

• The most important thing we can do is love God and people.

• The Christian church is a family – God is our Father, and we are brothers and sisters.

• Love comes from the heart. When our heart is hurt or broken, we have a hard time loving.

• “looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled.” (Heb. 12:15).

• Because you only live once, focus on love, acceptance and forgiveness!


“as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.” (1 Peter 2:2-3).

• Use a Bible reading schedule – pick one up today. 30 days to develop a new habit.

• The Bible will strengthen your faith and help you to trust God more (Romans 10:17).

• “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Romans 12:2).


“Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees.” (Heb. 12:12).

• Not only should we take care of our hearts and minds, but also our bodies!

• “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” (Rom. 12:1).

• “For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.” (1 Tim. 4:8).

• DISCUSS THIS SCRIPTURE: I used to quote “bodily exercise profits little” to excuse my not taking care of my body. But I was taking it out of context. Talk about exercise.

• “Exercise yourself toward godliness.” (1 Tim. 4:7b).


“17 Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, "Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?" 18 So Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. 19 You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery,' 'Do not murder,' 'Do not steal,' 'Do not bear false witness,' 'Do not defraud,' 'Honor your father and your mother.' " 20 And he answered and said to Him, "Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth." 21 Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, "One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me." 22 But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.” (Mark 10:17-22).


“Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit"; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” (James 4:13-15).

• Guard your heart – love God and people.

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Robert Atkins

commented on Dec 26, 2016

This hymn would be good for the new year. The tune is Londonderry Air/O Danny Boy Upon the shore, I walked with Him at even and I looked back upon the path we'd trod, and in the sand I traced our way at even, and I was glad I'd walked through life with God: for side by side we'd journeyed through together all through the world's wide wilderness of care, and side by side we'd journeyed through to even: safe at his side the Lord my God had brought me here. But in my joy I caught a strain of sadness to give me pause when thinking of my way, for on the shore I saw he'd left me lonely when I had most the need of him to stay: when I was tried he'd left me worn and wandering, he'd left me lone when I was fighting fears, he'd let me tread the steepest slopes in solitude before he came back to my side to dry my tears. But then the Lord drew near to me in comfort and in his tenderness he made it plain that in the times when dread and darkness threatened he was my shield and shelter from the pain: for on his shoulders he was gently bearing, and on his shoulders I from harm was free: the single trace of footprints of the Master, the single trace of footprints shows he carried me. So on the shore I walk with Him at even; I face the latter days of life secure, for if my pilgrimage reserves me sorrow the footprints show that He is strong and sure: if I am near the gates of heaven weary, no longer strong enough to stride alone the footprints show that he is there to carry me: the footprints show the Lord my God will bear me home.

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