Over the past few weeks, I’ve been listening to an audiobook of David Platt’s book titled Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream while driving to and from work and running errands. Almost every chapter has impacted my thinking in some small way, and I’m currently listening to the chapter about world poverty and American luxury.

At the beginning of this year, I decided to try listening to more audiobooks as an alternative to reading books in physical form. In 2018, I was able to get through three excellent books in audio format much more quickly than if I had attempted to read them, and I feel I got much more continuity out of the experience as well.

This morning we didn’t go to church because of a stomach bug that has been slowly working its way through our family. Instead, I decided to look up a sermon online for our family to watch. I happened to come across the website of David Platt, and found video of a sermon he preached last year regarding the importance of valuing Christ over comfort.

Gaining Christ through the gospel — gaining all of God and all his promises to his cross-reconciled children for all eternity and losing all sin and all death and all hell and all their accompanying miseries — was the reward that gave Paul his laser-like focus and fueled his self-discipline.

- Jon Bloom, The Secret to Self-Discipline

I’ve been pondering the idea of “Christian Essentialism” lately, and one topic that’s come to the forefront of my attention is self-discipline. In order to effectively put your energy towards one goal, you need the willpower and discipline to stay focused even when things get boring and mundane…