5 Reasons Not to Waste Your Leisure Time

Jeff Robinson | April 5, 2016

I know he meant well, but he came off sounding a little pompous, more like a professional wrestler on Saturday afternoon TV than an ordained man of God: “The Devil doesn’t take a day off. He doesn’t take vacations, and I don’t either.”

I’d been speaking to him of my family’s impending trip to the beach, how relaxing it would be, how I hoped it would recharge my pastoral batteries. He was having none of it. “I haven’t had a vacation in 40 years,” he said. “I look at fun the same way the Puritans did: Christians shouldn’t have any. I don’t have any hobbies, and I don’t want any.”

I knew I wasn’t going to get anywhere, so I dropped the conversation. But it did make me think. What are a Christian’s boundaries when it comes to leisure? And what about the Puritans? Were they against fun? This is important, because I agree with J. I. Packer that Puritanism represents the apex of mature Christian theology and spirituality, perhaps the most luminous star in the Reformation galaxy. 

In the years since my encounter with the overworked minister, I’ve studied the writings of the Puritans intently and have developed deep affections for them…

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