Great For Who?


Photo taken by Sarah Van Middlesworth – with the author choosing which line to take when he drops in at Fernie Ski Resort, B.C.

“I cannot give you the formula for success, but I can give you the formula for failure, which is: Try to please everybody.”

– Herbert Swope

Something I’ve been thinking about is: Whose name do you want to make great?

Your name or God’s name?

Those are the only two options. Really.

Our world tries to convey to us that our life is really all about us and there is an assortment of ways, no end – really, of how we can do things that gratify & satisfy ourselves.

This brings us to the issue of biography versus testimony. (1)

A biography means: look at what I’ve done. Look at me, my accomplishments, my achievements, my resume, my trophies, and my accolades.

A testimony means: look at what God has done in my life. It is acknowledging that without Him none of the good that is in my life would ever have happened and simply would not have come to be.

In short, a biography is all about you and a testimony is all about Jesus.

So, what’s it gonna be?

Whose name do you want to make great?

We’ve each got one life to be great for God.

As Pastor Mark Driscoll would say, “Don’t waste your life, make your life count for God.” (2)

I love listening to music, especially the lyrics to songs.

Here are a couple below that help illustrate my point:

“One Life” from Hedley:

You’ve got one life

One life

One life

Don’t stop don’t stop living up (3)

“This Is Your Life” from the popular band Switchfoot:

This is your life

Are you who you want to be? (4)

To want to be great in this world, like anything else in life, brings up the idea of motives and what your’s are.

Here are a few questions to get you thinking on this:

Why do you want to be great?

Who do you want to be great for?

A phrase my dad has said to me over the years is: “live in an audience of one.”

This has been a helpful and guiding reminder for why I do what I do in life.

It helps put things back in perspective, where the main thing becomes the main thing.

After all, what God thinks of you is the only opinion that really counts anyway.

And He thinks you’re pretty awesome.

I’ll leave the last words to the band Switchfoot, in their song, “Dare You To Move”:

I dare you to move

I dare you to move

I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor

I dare you to move

I dare you to move

Like today never happened

Today never happened before (5)


(1) “Empowered by the Spirit to Have a Testimony,” last modified June 29, 2014,

(2) “Investing For Jesus,” last modified June 26, 2011,

(3) “Hedley – One Life Lyrics,” last modified January 20, 2012,

(4) “This Is Your Life – Switchfoot Lyrics,” last modified April 20, 2011,

(5) “Switchfoot – Dare You To Move – with Lyrics,” last modified February 23, 2010,


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