A Lost Generation

Hedge logoThe New York Times recently ran an op-ed piece regarding Americans and God that provides a trite and concise look into the modern day pandemic of agnosticism.  While the author, Eric Weiner,  has a lot of understandable misconceptions about the nature of God, Christianity, and spirituality, his perspective is incredibly valuable to Christians, as it represents and contextualizes a growing sub-group of spiritually unaffiliated Americans.  This group, he calls the “Nones” are “the roughly 12 percent of people who say they have no religious affiliation at all.”  According to Weiner, they’re growing more quickly than any other self-identified religious demographic, which means we’re losing ground.  His analysis brings Christians a clear perspective on our failings to live our lives like we’ve been bought at a price.

God is not a lot of fun these days. Many of us don’t view religion so generously. All we see is an angry God. He is constantly judging and smiting, and so are his followers. No wonder so many Americans are enamored of the Dalai Lama. He laughs, often and well.

While certainly, God is not concerned with being “fun” or our Friday night poker buddy, He does want us to live a life free of sin, and full of satisfaction and joy.  Imagine our life from His perspective.  God gave the life of his Son for us, so that we might be free from sin, and yet here we are complaining, judging, and constantly absorbed in others sins, and comparatively minor issues.  How ungrateful and wasteful!  We leave no time to laugh, to love, and to enjoy the life that Jesus paid a very high (read: ultimate)  price to give us.   As we approach Christmas, pray we remember to be full of joy, peace, love, grace, and fun—because the life God has given each of us, didn’t come cheap.  What better way to thank Christ for the ultimate Christmas gift he came to give, than to make the most out of every moment.  And remember, the Nones will be watching and judging your every move—just don’t judge them back because they don’t know what they’re missing. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in.” Romans 15:13 (ESV)

You can read the full op-ed here, and discuss: What are some ways we can correct the misunderstandings so many “Nones” have about Christianity?

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3 Responses to A Lost Generation

  1. Brad Harris December 19, 2011 at 1:29 pm #

    I think we all need to be careful about our murmuring and complaining, especially in front of the world. But it is interesting that while they may know Christians who are joyful and loving, that is assumed to be the anomaly because the stereotype is assumed correct despite what is thought to be isolated evidence to the contrary. But while we may not change a person’s perception of the whole of Christianity, we need to be the individual exception to that person’s expectation.

    • John Robinson December 19, 2011 at 9:14 pm #

      I think you’re spot-on Brad. While I didn’t go into much detail in the post about joy and satisfaction, those two attributes come as a result of a couple of choices everyone makes. The only way we can truly have joy and satisfaction is to choose to yield our lives to Christ. He offers us joy and satisfaction, but we must choose to accept them.. We must choose to focus on the blessings, and seek opportunity in strife. We choose to be joyful, or we choose to not be joyful. As for me, I choose being joyful and satisfied with what God has given me.

  2. Brad Harris December 22, 2011 at 12:34 am #

    Good point, we choose whether to experience joy by choosing to yield our lives to Christ. And I must say, you’re doing pretty good at choosing to be joyful. Thank you.

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