Wall street journal best-selling author and comedian, Jon Acuff, spoke in chapel and led a talk back session at John Brown University Thursday.
Acuff’s goal is to clear away the mess of Christianity using satire.
Acuff gave examples of some things that he has noticed about Christians today.
Sometimes we get what Acuff calls “Prayer shot block,” when someone prays for something that God does not change, like romance in relationships.
He also explained about how sometimes people will throw out what he calls “Jesus Jukes” in normal conversation, whether in person or on social media, where someone inserts Jesus into the conversation.
Acuff told about one time he tweeted something that pertained to being a body builder, and someone wrote “Don’t you wish we would focus more energy on our prayers?”
Heather Pielemeier, freshman construction management major, thought Acuff was both entertaining and helpful at the same time.
“I liked his over-all approach. He was very real,” Pielemeier said.
Acuff explained that loving God and loving what you do don’t have to be separate entities.
“You can love God, and you can love film making, but you can also do both simultaneously,” Acuff said.
Acuff added that, because of redemption, God will throw you a party even though you have made mistakes.
Acuff urged the audience not to look for the Eureka moments, and pointed out that when God doesn’t do these things we begin to ask ourselves a lot of questions.
Acuff made the point that finding out what you want to do isn’t an act of discovery; it is an act of recovery.
“We need to stop trying to fix ourselves,” Acuff said.
Ask yourself what you have done in your life that you have loved, not what other people would love for you to do, and not what you want to be when you grow up.
“I have found that I am all about sharing ideas.” Acuff refers to himself and the work that he does as being an “Inside Architect.”
Acuff told a story of a boy at a Chuck-E-Cheese that accidently put mustard on his ice cream, and instead of accepting a new bowl to start over, the boy decided to mix in the mustard, and force-fed himself to try to fix or hide his mistake.
“There is only one line you can control in life. The line you control is never that finish line, it’s the start.”
We have all experienced our passion in our lives. In order to pinpoint what that passion is, we have to ask ourselves what gives us joy the most.
Acuff referred to Psalms 103:5 which says, “Who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagles.”
“I label myself as a serial quitter,” Acuff added. “I worked for about 10 years in corporate America and quit about eight times.”
The common denominator for every job that he had was himself, and he was making excuses for other reasons as to why they were not working out.
“If we spend our lives stirring we will miss out,” Acuff said.
Acuff stated that in the Gospel we learn to be sick, come broken, and to be loved, knowing and believing that we have grace through Jesus.
“Saving the world starts with life change,” Acuff said.
One thing that Acuff pointed out is that he gets invited to speak at places that pastors may never get invited to. He calls himself the “Trojan Horse for truth.”
Kendra Chester, senior English major, said that she really enjoyed having Acuff speak at JBU and that she had already read ‘Stuff Christians Like’ and knew what kind of things to expect.
“I was impressed with his ability to insert one-liners into a message,” said Chester.
Acuff explained that about 70 percent of his audiences are Christians and the other 30 percent are non-Christians. Acuff then explained that his two most recent books are more business and career based books.
“Learning how to motivate people to change is a big part of my job,” Acuff said.
Acuff currently has four books out: “Quitter,” “START,” “Gazelles, Baby Steps and 37 Other Things Dave Ramsey Taught Me About Debt”, and “Stuff Christians Like.”