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I always have to chuckle when I remember the story of the basketball coach that was disappointed in one of his players performance and told the man that he was either ignorant or apathetic, and asked him if he knew what that meant. The player replied, “I don’t know and I don’t care.”

Most of my life I believed that ignorance and apathy were bad things. Negative characteristics for a person to have. You never wanted anyone to accuse you of being ignorant or apathetic.

Recently I have begun to think differently about ignorance and apathy. In fact I have come to regard ignorance and apathy as badges of honor in some cases. There are a lot of things in this crazy culture and weird world of ours that we should be proud of being ignorant of and apathetic to, especially as Christians.

For example:

We could be a little more apathetic about our Facebook account, and be more accountable to the Good Book.

It’s okay to be ignorant about what CNN, CBS and Fox News have to say, but not about what the apostles Peter, Paul and John have to say.

Apathy is generally good when it comes to Twitter and TikTok, but bad when it comes to Timothy and Titus.

We can be ignorant of what is going on in the wide, wide, world of sports, but need to know what is going on in the world of missions, evangelism and outreach.

It’s not a problem to be apathetic about investing in the stock market, money market funds or real estate but it’s tragic to not care about investing in the poor, oppressed and abused.

Don’t worry about being ignorant of your news feed, but always be intentional about your God Feed.

We can be apathetic to WhatsApp messages and it won’t destroy us; being apathetic to What’s Up with the message of salvation will.

We can all live happy lives being ignorant of what Adele, Eilish and Beiber are doing, but be miserable not knowing what God wants us to do.

It won’t hurt us if we don’t care what blursday, maskne, or walktails are, but it’s definitely detrimental to our well being if we don’t care what atonement, propitiation and redemption are.

Considering these examples, I think we can find reasons to celebrate ignorance and apathy with regards to the things of the world, but should never be apathetic to the things of God and always seek to know our Creator and Savior better.

As Pascal intimates in the quote above, we should all be wary about being unduly knowledgeable in small matters and ignorant in great matters.

Don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. James 4:4

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Recently I was reading the first chapter of first Peter when a phrase in verse 18 hit me – Empty Way of Life. Peter is telling his readers that now that you are believers you should be holy in all that you do (15) and live in reverent fear of God (17). In verse 18 he reminds them that before they were redeemed by the precious blood of Christ, they were living an empty way of life. Those four words – empty way of life – prompted me to begin thinking of our culture and all the people who think their lives are full, but are really empty. Here are a few thoughts for all of us to consider:

If your checking account, savings account and wallet are full of money, but you don’t know the riches of God’s love, your life is empty.

If your Christmas tree of life has been filled with beautiful ornaments like cars, houses, fine furniture, new appliances and electronic gadgets, but you don’t know the Christ of Christmas, your life is empty.

If your time is full of political podcasts, right wing books or left wing propaganda, and you know powerful people in high places, but you haven’t experienced the power of the Holy Spirit, your life is empty.

If you identify as LGBTQ but aren’t the least bit concerned about WWJD, then your life is empty.

If you give lots of money to charity and spend lots of time promoting good causes, but have not received God’s gift of forgiveness, your life is empty.

If you love things, wealth and power, but don’t love God and people, deeply, from the heart (verse 22), then your life is empty.

As is attributed to Pascal, “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of each man which cannot be satisfied by any created thing but only by God the creator, made known through Jesus Christ.” Or, perhaps more accurately, “this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself”.

This Christmas season may we make a greater effort to read God’s Word, meditate on his promises, ponder the incredible significance of the baby in the manger, internalize the importance of Emmanuel and thus enjoy truly full lives.

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 1 Peter 1:18-19

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