Strategic marketing and personal-fulfillment mantras are designed to tempt us toward thrill-seeking, binge-watching, and adventure-hunting to our heart’s content – when our true fulfillment, contentment, and pleasure will be found in Jesus Christ. In this episode, Leslie shares the difference between the pursuit of our own gratification versus the pure enjoyment of the blessings God has graced us with.
It’s hard to ignore the pull of the culture to live for pleasure. Email, entertainment, even discount coupons are all centered around pursuing our own happiness. Social outings, parties, and material comforts are applauded and labeled as the key to a fun and fulfilling life. It’s important to know how to thoroughly enjoy what God has created to its fullest while remaining focused on what is of eternal significance in our lives. This episode will help you discover just that!
Key Question: Is it wrong to enjoy the pleasures of this life?
Key Truth: It is the wise plan and good gift of our Father to give us things in this life to enjoy – creation, relationships, places, food, etc. However, it is critical that we learn to enjoy pastimes, surroundings, and creation in a godly way.
Are you always looking for the next “big thing” to bring excitement or meaning to your life?
As Christians, it is all to easy to fall into the worldly mentality of pursuing pleasure, thrill, and life enjoyment, but true happiness can only be found when we live for eternity. Remember the wise words of CT Studd, “Only one life, it will soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”
The book of Ecclesiastes is more than a book of futility and hopelessness. Rather, it is a great reminder that there is only one thing in this life that can truly satisfy – Jesus Christ. King Solomon was at the pinnacle of success and possessed every material comfort, yet he admitted that earthly pleasures were temporary and shallow at best. Allow Solomon’s wisdom to renew your mindset and realize that even though we can pursue and attain the very best life has to offer, it doesn’t supply us with true, long-lasting joy. The Bible makes it clear that we can have joy “unspeakable and full of glory” (see 1 Peter 1:8) when we build our lives around the pursuit of heavenly treasure.
Laying up treasure in Heaven simply means investing our time, energy, and resources in things that have eternal value. It is here that our earthly pleasure can be checked and kept in proper balance. Examine your focus and mindset of what you are actively building your life around.
How to enjoy everyday blessings to the glory of God:
- When enjoying recreational activities, hobbies, or outings, focus your mind on Christ and things of eternal value as you partake in those fun activities. Christians are not to lead an unplugged, disconnected life from Christ. He desires us to enjoy communion with Him all throughout the day.
- Prayerfully examine your motives behind why you spend your time the way that you do. Ask yourself:
- Am I doing this activity for selfish or God-honoring reasons?
- Is this activity frivolous or does it serve a higher purpose?
- Does this bear good or bad fruit in my life? (See Galatians 5:19-23.)
How to know if you an activity or pastime is an earthly pleasure or an eternally-focused activity:
- It causes you to draw closer to Jesus and learn more about Him.
- It builds meaningful relationships with those God has put in your life.
- It blesses others and assists you in sharing the love of Christ with them.
- It helps you be better equipped for the purpose Christ has called you to.
- It leaves you peacefully refreshed instead of agitated and distracted.
I encourage you to make this practical by writing down the specific priorities and responsibilities God has called you to and examine your hobbies and pastimes in light of those callings. If they are pulling you away from what God has called you to, they are less than His best for you at this season of your life. However, if they are aiding and supporting the calling or season you are in, they are beneficial and will help you to live a fruitful Christian life.
1 Timothy 5:16
The Hiding Place, Corrie ten Boom
Set Apart Conference Joyful Living