There aren’t Life Hacks for following Jesus

This is actually a useful "lifehack."  Photo Credit: drbakker via Compfight cc
A helpful “lifehack”
Photo Credit: drbakker via Compfight cc

I grew up in the 90’s so whenever I hear the terms hack, hacker, or hacking, I immediately think of someone typing really fast on a computer trying to break through some sort of firewall. The term “hacking” however has evolved over the past decade and now share their latest “life hack” on Facebook. If you’re not familiar with the term “Life hacking” it “refers to any trick, shortcut, skill, or novelty method that increases productivity and efficiency, in all walks of life.” [1] There’s even a website called Lifehacker.com. Now to be honest, there are a lot of neat tips and tricks out there for making life easier, but when it comes to following Jesus there aren’t any life hacks.

Eugene Peterson writes, “Everyone is in a hurry. The persons who I lead in worship, among whom I counsel, visit, pray, preach and teach, want shortcuts. They want me to fill out the form that will get them instant credit (in eternity). They are impatient for results. They have adopted the lifestyle of a tourist and only want the high points.”

We live an impatient culture, but follow a patient God. Culture wants change right away and God helps us change over time. I was reminded of this recently when I heard Chris Smith speak again about his book Slow Church. I was reminded that the Gospel is a long-term solution to the suffering of the world. The gospel does not offer a quick fix. This is why Eugene Peterson adopts the phrase “A Long Obedience in the Same Direction” for the title of his book. There aren’t 5 easy steps to following Jesus. There’s some good advice out that I can offer, but none of them will get you there quickly.

Reading your Bible 6 days in a row won’t fix all your problems and praying everyday for week at 1pm won’t make you a new person by the end of the week, but choosing to do these things regularly will slowly change your life into a life that looks like Jesus. You should take small steps like committing to read your bible or praying for a week. It can help you jumpstart your walk with Jesus, but the choice to follow Jesus is a lifelong commitment to long-term obedience, not a series of shortcuts and helpful tips.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_hacking

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