For a while now I haven’t been experiencing any love and joy in following God. My friend, Patrick, told me to start reading Desiring God by John Piper, where he argues that we are meant to take pleasure in God and He is most glorified in us when we do. In the beginning (pg. 28) he provides a definition for Christian hedonism.
Christian Hedonism is a philosophy of life built on the following five convictions:
1. The longing to be happy is a universal human experience, and it is good, not sinful.
2. We should never try to deny or resist our longing to be happy, as though it were a bad impulse. Instead, we should seek to intensify this longing and nourish it with whatever will provide the deepest and most enduring satisfaction.
3. The deepest and most enduring happiness is found only in God. Not from God, but in God.
4. The happiness we find in God reaches its consummation when it is shared with others in the manifold ways of love.
5. To the extent that we try to abandon the pursuit of our own pleasure, we fail to honor God and love people. Or, to put it positively: the pursuit of pleasure is a necessary part of all worship and virtue. That is:
The Chief end of man is to glorify God
enjoying him forever. (1)
I look forward to reading more of the book.
(1) Piper, John. Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist. Revised ed. Colorado Springs: Multnomah Books, 2011. 28. Print.