A Disciplined Life: Resolutions of Jonathan Edwards

One of the more inspiring and meaningful things I’ve come across in the past few years have been the Resolutions of Jonathan Edwards. This collection of statements, which he called resolutions, by one of the greatest American theologians serves almost like a modern-day Proverbs, giving attainable aspirations for how to live a fruitful and God-glorifying life.

A central theme is making the most of every moment, not settling for idleness or simply letting things happen. There is a strong sense of discipline in each of the resolutions, something that is lost on our culture and among many men. We bounce from one thing to the next, never giving one thing our undivided attention so that we could accomplish it to the fullest. The kind of discipline that requires takes an incredible amount of effort, but it’s something all men should be pursuing.

Here’s an example of the kind of perspective and discipline that Edwards shares:

“I frequently hear persons in old age say how they would live, if they were to live their lives over again: Resolved, that I will live just so as I can think I shall wish I had done, supposing I live to old age.”

And this:

“Resolved, to endeavor to obtain for myself as much happiness, in the other world, as I possibly can, with all the power; might, vigor, and vehemence, yea violence, I am capable of, or can bring myself to exert, in any way that can be thought of.”

It’s powerful stuff, and something on which to meditate and use to create our own resolutions for our lives.

You can read the full list of resolutions on Desiring God by clicking here.


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