Enjoying God in Everything
There’s a pattern among Christians where many will abstain from “the pleasures of this world” as a sort of attempt at “holiness”. And other Christians choose to live hedonistically, enraptured by the pleasures our physical senses can deliver, sometimes feeling guilty for doing so, and asking forgiveness later. If you are in either of these camps, or gravitate to either of these extremes, I’ve got a book recommendation for you.
In Eyes Wide Open, DeWitt brings an almost childlike, but very much theologically nuanced, perspective to bear on topics like beauty, art, and food. He discusses how these things should not only be enjoyed by Christians, but that they are an important part of the Christian life. He repeatedly points out what you will realize should have been obvious—that these things are reflections of the Father, designed and provided for our enjoyment. Luscious streams designed to lead us back to Him.
The first few chapters, part one, discuss the ability to see beauty, and recognize it as God’s beauty—all of it. Part two discusses creation’s voice in declaring God’s beauty to us; how beauty should turn us to wonder, and praise; and how easily we are duped into believing we can find ultimate happiness in created beauties. The third and final part combines and builds on the first two, expounding on our responsibility and privilege of enjoying God in all we do, see, touch, hear, and eat. It also gets more into the gritty details of how to apply these concepts to every day life, and by what standards we should judge Story in entertainment.
DeWitt’s style is engaging, imaginative, and even playful. Most of all, it is joyful, and urgent. Despite the loads of thought-provoking quotes, radical concepts, it’s almost too easy to read too quickly. I suggest pacing yourself to let things sink in, and take the time to answer the discussion questions at the end of each chapter.
I was introduced to this book at the perfect time. Anxiety and other thorns of this life can easily choke out my enjoyment of just about everything, and Eyes Wide Open helped me to strengthen my theology of beauty and wonder, and work towards applying it to my life, being more mindful of what I enjoy and why, and instead of feeling guilty when I indulge (hopefully in healthy doses), I praise my Father for making so many little pictures of Himself, and filling my life with them. This is an important subject for every Christian to think on, and be mindful of on a moment-to-moment basis, whether at work or play.
If you struggle to contain the joy you can find on this earth, DeWitt shows you what to do with it. If you love material pleasures, or are afraid of them, this book will be a huge blessing to you as DeWitt shows you how to follow these temporal paths to our eternal, impossibly loving, Father.
Published on 14 March, 2016. Last updated on