Some of y’all are afraid that you won’t enjoy life if you start following Jesus. Many seekers are under the impression that becoming a disciple of Christ means that all things “fun” are barred. Listen, it’s a mistake to think that the Christian life is dull or that placing your faith in Jesus would cause all of the color in your life to fade to gray like one of those old fifties’ commercials. If that’s where you’re at, let me put your mind at ease, my friend. I’m not bored, and you won’t be either. (Unless, of course, you’re just a naturally boring person and you can’t blame your faith for that! Lol. But seriously.)
If someone were to ask you what your definition of “fun” is, what would you say? After all your definition of “fun” says a lot about who you are. No, seriously. This is not a rhetorical question. Take one minute and write down what you consider “fun”? What activities do you feel may be threatened by becoming a Christian?
Merriam-Webster defines the word “fun” as follows: “someone or something that is amusing or enjoyable; an enjoyable experience or person; an enjoyable or amusing time; the feeling of being amused or entertained.”
So if we take this Merriam-Webster definition seriously, one can conclude that “fun” is ultimately a label people place on what they take pleasure in. That’s what fun is all about. Pleasure. So if I ask you, “What do you do for fun?” What I’m really asking you is: “What do you take pleasure in?”
Your idea of “fun” is ultimately defined by the object of your affections.
So why does your “fun” feel threatened?
Take a look at the list of things you listed as fun. What does your definition of fun say about your affections? Would you say based on that list, that your pleasure is more self-centered or Christ-centered? Let’s be real here. Why do you feel like your “fun” might be threatened by Christ? Cause’ if you wrote down activities like playing chess, listening to music, or refurbishing sofa-beds, you really don’t have much to worry about. On the other hand if you wrote down (or thought of) activities like getting drunk with a group of friends, gossiping, having sex outside of marriage, smoking weed, watching porn, (or whatever random bad thing that God would not be cool with) then it would make sense for you to feel threatened by obedience to Christ.
Then again, there is that word I just used. Yep, the one with the “o” and ends with the “bedience.” Yeah, that one. It doesn’t really have a lot of “likes” in the world’s Facebook home page feed. Obedience seems to conjure images of restriction, drudgery, and slavery. A pursuit of moral perfection with no end goal in mind. While the word “fun” conjures up images of popping champagne bottles, glitzy outfits, giggling cool kids, and red hot lust. Obedience to Christ sounds like dead, cold “religion.” A bunch of dos and don’ts that keep you from getting at the real fun of life. So you can’t help but ask yourself: “If I become a Christian am I doomed to die of boredom? Of drudgery?”
The Answer You Probably Weren’t Expecting
The answer is “No,” my friend. You will not die of boredom. Living for Christ will not feel like house arrest. You want to know why? Christ redefines your idea of “fun” once you become His disciple. Before you become a Christian, the object of your pleasure is yourself. In other words, you are self-centered and care less about what God considers “wrong” and more about what feels good or right to you.
When Paul was addresses the church in Ephesians 2:1-5, he reminds them of who they were before placed their trust in Christ:
Before you come to know Jesus as Savior and Lord, you have three main influences in your life: (1) You sin nature (verses 1-2a); (2) The World (verse 2); & (3) Satan, named here as “The Prince of the Power of the Air” (verse 2). If your idea of “fun” isn’t threatened by these three influences, but are threatened by obedience to Christ, then I challenge you to ask yourself whether those temporary pleasures will outweigh the eternal agony of hell. Such “fun” will be the death of you come judgment day.
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Your Delight & Joy
The seeker who is concerned about his or her “pleasure” is not unreasonable. In fact, you must completely engage your emotions in devotion to Christ in order to consider yourself a lover of God. Hence, those that question whether they can love God by their own efforts subconsciously acknowledge how powerless we are to come to God without him first drawing us (John 6:44). Those who feel drawn to become a follower of Christ, don’t have to fear a life drudgery or cold, dead religion. You just need to put your trust in God and he’ll handle your affections. Check out what He says in Ezekiel 36:26-27:
“And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.”
It might sound crazy but if you genuinely come to Christ, you won’t desire the same things you did before. You won’t consider them as “fun” anymore. Next to Jesus, you’ll see how utterly empty those things really are. The Holy Spirit helps you day by day become more Christ-like. You become someone that takes delight in pleasing God. Of course this doesn’t mean that you won’t feel tempted to sin, but as you continue to grow in the knowledge and wisdom of God – His character and attributes & how much He loves you- you’ll no longer be attracted to the things that displease him.
I hope you’re beginning to see the common thread here- It’s all about God. It’s not about “following your heart,” because your heart is deceitful (Jer 17:9). It’s not about “living in the moment,” because yolo (you only live once) is a lie, my friend (Matt 25:46; Joh 3:16). What you choose to take pleasure in right now will ultimately determine where you spend your eternity. Repent, place your trust in Christ. God will ensure that your affections follow suit.