Hey, Book Club Readers,
Did you know that John Bunyan, the author of our September Book Club selection Pilgrim’s Progress, was an English preacher and writer way back in the mid-1600s? He grew up in a very poor family and became a tinker (someone who fixed pots when they got a hole in them from being used so much). In his early 20s, he got married and had a little girl who was blind.
In his autobiography, Grace Abounding, he talks about becoming a Christian around the age of 22 and struggling with despair, much like Christian did at the beginning of Pilgrim’s Progress. Bunyan spent four years learning from some older Christian women of the church in his village. He finally became baptized in his mid-20s and began preaching in Bedford, England a year or so later. When he 28 years old, his first book, Some Gospel Truths, was published. The next year, his second book, Vindication, came out.
So here’s what I want to talk about: Between the ages of 21 and 29 – in just eight years – John Bunyan got married, came to know Christ, studied enough to become a church leader and preacher, wrote two books, and became a dad to four children. His 20s were full of big life changes, and he got through them by constantly growing his faith.
Our 20s will be important years full of many of life’s milestones and changes for most of us. But are we really preparing for them? Our culture says our high school and college years are for partying and playing. Even if we pat ourselves on the back for not partying, are we really using our time wisely? Do we have all the time in the world for movies and the mall, or should we be doing other things? Not that we can’t relax with friends and family or enjoy a new pair of shoes, but what are we putting in our lives right now that will have lasting – maybe even eternal – value?
What about the boys you are interested in? Are they wasting time? Or are they preparing themselves to be the kind of men who could love you and your children the way you should be loved someday?
After reading about Christian’s struggle to make it to The Celestial City and all the temptations he encountered along the way, those are the questions I’m thinking about today. How about you?