Don’t Waste Your Life

Dear Collegians,

I hope your second semester is off to a good start, and that there aren’t too many cobwebs from Christmas break. It was great to see so many of you when you were back home, and if I didn’t get a chance to see you then, hopefully I’ll get a chance to connect with you over Spring break or another weekend you stop by Garner.

As you’re dealing with the business of life, studies, relationships, and work, it’s easy for all of us to get so caught up in the details that we never spend any time actually living for anything. But let me warn you – don’t waste your life. Don’t spend all of your time living for the details and missing the big picture. Not only is it possible, it is natural for Americans to be consumed by pleasure and business and a whole host of other temporal, trivial issues in life. But there’s only one way to live so that you don’t waste your life. And that is to live in such a way that demonstrates that Jesus is more valuable and priceless to you than anything else in this world. He’s more valuable to you than money or marriage, or power or pleasure.

Our Lord Jesus finds our desires not too strong, but too weak.

We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased. – C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

If you’d like to learn more about how to live in such a way as to not waste your life, I’d encourage you to download this free book – Don’t Waste Your Life (.pdf format). Its written by a pastor who has mentored me through the years named John Piper, and you can find more about him and his ministry here.

You are in the years of your life when you are making a lot of decisions that will define who you are and what you do for years to come. My prayer for you (and for myself) is that you wouldn’t come to the end of your life and sadly whisper, “I’ve wasted it.” If you ever want to talk about this or anything else on your mind, get a hold of me: pastorbrian AT zionerchurch Dot com or 641.923.3152. I’d love to talk. Until then, don’t waste your life but let’s live for the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ!

Hope to see you soon,
Pastor Brian

Don’t Waste Your Life

Couples Can’t Figure Out Monogamy

“Many young American couples can’t agree on whether they’ve decided to have sex only with each other, a new study shows.”REALLY?! Now, far be it from me to criticize just because I disagree, but this article didn’t come across as the pinnacle of scholarship or journalistic rigor. For example, when Marie Harvey, a professor of public health, said, “Couples have a hard time talking about these sorts of issues, and I would imagine for young people it’s even more difficult,” my initial impression of Harvey’s inductive skills doesn’t skyrocket. The whole article can be read here.

But perhaps more worrisome than the incompetence of the authors is the idiocy of the subjects of the investigation: “…married couples were no more likely than other couples to have an explicit monogamy agreement.” REALLY?! You can’t find a commitment to monogamy somewhere in your marriage vows?!

This is one of those where you either have to laugh or cry. It seems that the sexual revolution of the ’60s liberated us right out of reality and into some dystopic orgy of confusion. We’re living in Eliot’s Hollow Men world with hollow marriage promises. How does this kind of world end? “Not with a bang, but a whimper.”

WSC: Christianity & Liberalism Revisited

The annual conference held at Westminster Seminary, CA this year is “Christianity & Liberalism Revisited: A retrospective and prospective.” The title derives from J. Gresham Machen’s 1923 monograph which maintained that liberal Christianity was not, in point of fact, Christian at all. Machen, who would go on to establish Westminster Theological Seminary, became an important figure for confessional Christianity in the face of liberalizing tendencies. By looking backward and forward, this conference looks like a fascinating opportunity to contemplate where confessional Christianity is facing challenges and what, if anything, may be done about it. You can find out all the details at their site.

Wishing you could hear this amazing conference but can’t swing out to SoCal for the weekend? Never fear! WSC is graciously hosting the event live, and you can watch the live stream here. I’ve got my connection all warmed up. The first session begins tonight (Jan 14) at 7pm (Pacific Time).

“Christianity and Liberalism Today” –Michael S. Horton
“The Perennial Machen” –D.G. Hart
“Machen and the Bible” –Joel. E. Kim
“Machen and the Gospel” –J.V. Fesko
“Machen and Ethics” –David VanDrunen
“Machen, Christianity, and the Church” –W. Robert Godfrey
“Q & A” -Faculty

Looks like I’ve got my viewing pleasures all mapped out for the next two days. Will you be watching?