“Take my hand, I’ll show you the wild, side
Like it’s the last night of our lives (uh huh)
We’ll keep dancing ’till we die
Let’s make the most of the night like we’re gonna die young.” ~Ke$ha
Lyrics like these are played everywhere and it creates a desensitization to the message. The message that says, “I will leave my reputation and conscience at the door and do things as if the consequences are irrelevant since tonight is the last night.” In addition to music lyrics, we are surrounded by magazine covers of teen moms and the downward spiral from drug use, crazy parties and arrests of young stars we admire. It somehow seems cool to go off the deep end or party the night away when it’s glorified in the media, especially when we don’t usually see the consequences that come from celebrity behavior.
But the fact is, there is a tomorrow. In the case of a 15 year old girl named Audrie, she got wasted at a party to the point of unconscienceness. Three teenage boys dragged her in a bedroom, took off her clothes, drew on her body with permanent marker, and then took cell phone photos as they sexually assaulted her. When she woke up the next morning, she had no recollection of what happened, only saw that she was naked and marker ink was covering her body. At school on Monday, her photos had surfaced on every student’s cell phone and was even being passed around on Facebook and even posted on websites. “I have a reputation for a night I don’t even remember and the whole school knows,” Audrie wrote in one Facebook message to a friend. She thought she was just partying the night away and the boys thought they were just playing a practical prank. They were acting like there is no tomorrow, no future to plan for and no consequences to consider. But the consequences were far more permanent than any drunk thrill or party prank.
Audrie committed suicide that week and the boys are each charged with sexual battery, dissemination and possession of child pornography. Tragically, a beautiful, talented, chosen daughter of God was lost due to falling victim to cyber-bullying and the aftermath of a night gone wrong.
To read more on this story, click here.
“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12
As much as we see the message of living like it’s our last night everywhere, it is ultimately destructive. As God’s daughters, we are not called to live like it’s our last night. No, we are called to mentor, change, inspire and lead nations. (Matthew 28:19) And that great call starts now. You are worth holding yourself to a higher standard. It is easy to walk on the big, wide open path…that’s why so many people are there. But, greatness starts in walking the narrow path. “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” Matthew7:13-14. Why not be one of the few? The only thing stopping you is yourself and any weeds in your life. Here are 3 ways to be a world changer.
1. Lay Your Foundation:
The framework of your life determines how you handle adversity and unexpected detours. It is very difficult to produce good fruit when there isn’t a healthy soil. You can keep your soil healthy by seeking out and acting out the words of Jesus. That is the foundation that will keep you firmly rooted despite any trial or triumph you face. He says, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.” Matthew 7:24. If you are unsure of where to start in learning the word of God, a devotional bible or a study bible is a fantastic resource. Joyce Meyer has a great study bible that explains stories and concepts in understandable terms. Once you learn it, start living it out and applying principles to your every day life. The more you practice, the stronger you become. And the stronger you become, the smaller fears will become.
2. Plant Good Seeds:
The seeds you plant now will be the fruit you eat later. A decision you make is a seed. Many bad decisions are glaringly obvious, but what about in regard to your character? Do you choose to follow through on a commitment even when you don’t feel like it? Or do you flake, reschedule and cancel without regard to the other person’s schedule? Each decision has a by-product. The first choice would lead to strong relationships with people and a honorable reputation. The second does the exact opposite. “Don’t be misled–you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.” Galatians 6:7. If you have a dream, a goal or ambition, the decisions you make now matter. It is not too early to start.
3. Make Decisions Based On Facts:
If you are going to be a leader, you can’t lead based on your feelings alone, but on the never failing, ever strengthening Word of God. A leader is not limited to someone with an official title. A leader is someone who inspires, encourages and motivates others to be their best, to never give up and to never settle. A leader is someone who fights for justice on the behalf of those who can not stand up for themselves. As a leader, people you don’t even know are watching you. When someone provokes you with a hateful comment, you may want to lash back and make them wish they’d kept that comment to themselves. But the word says, “Control your temper, for anger labels you a fool.” Ecclesiastes 7:9. You may feel like you want to get wasted at that party tonight and you don’t care what anyone thinks anymore. But God says, “A good name is better than fine perfume.” Ecc.7:1.
You are too good, too fearfully made to waste your life away on a night getting wasted. You are above playing pranks on innocent people. I would imagine Audrie and the boys who assaulted her would say the same thing now. Tragically, she felt like it was too late to reverse the damage that was done to her name and her reputation. But, God can always redeem and restore any mistake we make or any injustice that has been done to us. He can always take our mess and turn it into a message. But he has also given us a handbook of wisdom from which to refer so we don’t have to go through self-induced sufferings. Choose today to be a light in your realm of influence, to take a stand for good and to be a world-changer that leaves a legacy.