Thursday, November 5, 2015

5 tips

In a recent e-mail update Frank Viola commented on these five things as lessons of life that a young Christian should know.

1. You’ll turn your head and you’ll be 40 years old. So live in the present and savor every moment. You cannot rewind the clock of your life.

I've no real 'I've not savoured every moment' regrets, but I would probably have done some things differently.

I wish I'd read fewer books, but sought more to learn from them; taken notes in my 'commonplace book' for example, and reflected more on them. Thus, fewer trashy Christian pop-books would have been good (then I wouldn't be reading Sartre now, but 30 years ago...when I was actually reading Heidegger! and, yes, I know those two are not Christian).

Maybe I should've taken my high school career advisor's advice and chosen a slightly different career (same broad industry, but different role); I'm pretty happy with the degrees I've done, except maybe the undergrad degree (which follows from above).

Work is important; I would have been less distracted from it and devote more to it in early years, when one is building one's professional profile. I left it a bit late.

I buried myself in church life, and became vulnerable, therefore point 3. below. If I'd put more into my profession, I would possibly have been more resilient and be in a much better place now (except nothing beats my children).

2. Life won’t get easier. So learn to accept trials, disappointments, suffering, and incalculable loss.

I think life does get easier: so far I can deal with loss and disappointments with a degree of resilience that sometimes surprises me...still, I don't want more. I think my responses are more grounded in faith, in a God who brings his kingdom and who will bring the new creation.

3. Christians will break your heart.

Bloke Christians have sometimes disappointed me, but it's girl Christians that have broken me...not just my heart, and steered my life, as per 5. below.

4. A great deal of what you are certain about now, you’ll question later in life.

This is probably true, my theology has become both firmer and more questioning (that is in a good way; for example, I can now happily read quite liberal theologies and see the spiritual thoughts they are grappling with, and admire their faith)

5. The commitments you made in your 20s will be severely tested in your early 30s

Actually, the commitments of my early 20s were severely tested in my later 20s! I purposely jettisoned the path of my 20s because it lead to a brick wall of heartbreak and loss (girl trouble); so I turned to a path to seek to be more self-protective, less open and more measured in my affections.

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