Can we make sense of satisfaction or real joy? It’s one life’s most common questions. Answers for most people are rather less common. I’m interested in knowing, aren’t you? Here’s a book to show us the way.
The subtitle of “Meditations of a Christian Hedonist” tells you what a unique writing John Piper presents to us in this revised edition published by Multnomah. It’s interesting that he has to answer for his writings 25 years later when life had opportunity to test his theories. I found it a real challenge to my Christian life. He goes against so much conventional wisdom, but really discusses the subject with a Bible ever in his hands.
Don’t let the term “Christian Hedonist” turn you off. He certainly isn’t suggesting that you throw your life away in a pointless pursuit of worldly pleasures. Quite the opposite, he simply believes that life’s greatest joy comes from seeking joy in God. He further proves that this is exactly what the Lord enjoys from us. As he says, “This is a serious book about being happy in God.” We all want to be happy and this truly is the only way. This works beautifully in that: “We get the mercy; He gets the glory. We get the happiness in Him; He gets the honor from us.”
He tweaks the famous confession to “The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever.” I think he makes a powerful case that the Bible actually teaches this very thing. His chapter on the “The Happiness of God” is hard to refute. Apparently, in the last 25 years several have tried.
Mr. Piper weaves his premise through many of the most important aspects of the Christianity. Happiness in God is all through the warp and woof of our Christian experience in conversion, worship, love, and prayer. It gets especially interesting and life-altering when he speaks on things like money, missions, and suffering. Our modern-day Christianity comes out of those chapters bloodied but perhaps that is fair as this same modern Christianity has slaughtered our happiness on many occasions!
You simply must read this book. There’s not much Calvinism to work around if you are more of a whosoever-will man like I am. I read each chapter so much more slowly than usual. There was so much to think about, so much heart-searching demanded, but I assure you that you will be glad you took the time to read it. I can see myself referring to it again and again in the years ahead.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.