“You’re no fun!” Haven’t we all heard that or something like it? For me, it’s usually been in response to not going to a strip club after an office Christmas party, or stopping drinking before getting drunk when at your mate’s place or at the pub. In society, there is this pervasive perception that if you are a Christian, that means you cannot have fun.
At face value, when you think about Christians and how we live, from the world’s point of view the statement that “Christians are boring”, or “Christians can’t have fun” seems valid. The way our non-Christian friends see it, we aren’t supposed to get drunk, we don’t usually go out and party, we say that you shouldn’t have sex until marriage, and the list goes on.
I worked for a company for many years where I was surrounded by people who came in on Monday and bragged about how completely smashed they got on the weekend. Quite often I heard something like, “I went to the pub on Saturday night. I don’t remember getting home, and was so wasted on Sunday that I slept the whole day.” For so many in our society here in Australia, this is what constitutes fun. When I talked to them about my weekend (soccer, home and church on Sunday) they couldn’t comprehend it. It became a bit of a joke each Monday morning.
I shared with them the things I did and how I found them fun. Hanging out with friends, soccer, BBQ’s, my love of wine, but it still didn’t click.
The thing I realised is that nothing I did or could say would ever have convinced them that living the Christian life is “fun”. I could have talked to them about it till I was blue in the face, but as Paul talks about so often in his letters, the flesh is strong. The pull of our flesh to satisfy itself is what is fun to those who don’t have the Holy Spirit inside them. They don’t, and never will, understand. I know I didn’t!
If someone is genuinely asking you about it and wondering how you can have fun, or how boring your life must be now that you are a Christian, the best thing to do is to help them experience true Christianity. Invite them to a BBQ with friends, go camping or four wheel driving with them.
Talk to them and find out what they love to do and do that with them! Don’t try and convince them with words, SHOW them what real Christianity is. It will become a massively positive experience in their lives instead of a negative impression. And above all remember that Jesus didn’t stay aloof from the world. He met with the sinners, he went to their houses and had dinner with them. He calls us to do the same!