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September 15, 2008

Comments

Alexander Wilhelmsen

I've never understood drinking period.

As you know, I'm 24, and yeah, I had a sip of alcohol on my 21st birthday and not too soon after, I spit it back up. Then again, I was then given the legal right to drink responsibly if I chose to, but I have almost waived that right completely (as I always fully disclose the facts for my opinions, I've had a bottle of some Strawberry Daquiri cooler, about a cup of sangria that I thought was simply punch... which is probably why I didn't spit it back out, and a few sips here and there amounting to less than a drink, so about 36 ounces in 41 months).

This excludes the sip of Catholic wine I had accidently (as non-Catholics don't take Catholic communion, or aren't supposed to).

Anyways, I've never had the desire to, and the few tastes have been nasty or with an afterburn, so Coke and Sweet Tea are honestly right up my alley.

As a young adult who has worked with youth (now primarily with a different group), I never understood the excitement and desire to drink to excess, especially when these are intelligent and well educated students who do this. Maybe social drinking has some calming benefits, but if I want to be calmed down, then I'll go somewhere that's away from people and maybe simply talk sans the drink (or that's what I'd rather do).

Biblically, there are two verses that are worth noting in the bible... Ephesians 5:18, which I remember that you gave a message using the Message version of the verse, where it says not to get drunk with wine or other alcohol, but to drink in the Holy Spirit... the other positive mention is Acts 2:13, where the Christian community is being made fun of saying, "they have had too much wine," when the community is together and experiencing God (not surprisingly, it's Pentecost from which we get the word Pentecostal... a.k.a. "Those crazy people").

In almost all other references to wine, alcohol, or drunkeness, it's disgraceful or advice against it, because it leads to disgrace. The first part of Proverbs 31 (King Lemuel's advice from his mother, prior to talking about the "Best Babe in the Bible," to use alliteration) says that leaders should not waste time on alcohol or scandalous women... it's also probably further reason that I don't care for the stuff. It says how it screws up said people's minds, and to have my right mind messed up is soooo not worth it.

The reason for alcohol, sex, drugs, and comic books is kind of like how you wrote out what the people at ComicCon desire in terms of living life passionately. How do you cope with a lack of joy? You put something there hoping that it will make you truly happy, when only God can fully do that when he is first, and everything else comes after.

I wanted to have a taste of alcohol on my 21st Birthday just to say that I did it, and all that took was probably not more than a half a shot glass or less, and then to spit it back out soon after (so maybe you can chalk this lightweight down for "ill effects"), but hardly what the others did.

Then again, I guess that's how I benefit from not celebrating birthdays or having oh so many peers that I'm constantly around. However, it was kind of funny when I was at a table of Young Adults, two are hired youth staff and one is a volunteer, and one said, with an obvious stunned tone in her voice, "You don't drink?" To that I said, "No." In contrast, some of my way more secular friends (that I like a lot better as well) honestly respect that fact, as well as my faith, which is also not as respected in the old church circle I've left behind.

What wouldn't surprise me is that the student was never told that just because you can legally do it doesn't mean that you should, or that God should be your Spirit, not a bottle or can of suds. If someone said that most of the walks of those that drink was lacking, it wouldn't suprised me either (nor that they have friends that they feel the need to impress).

What you have to hope for is that the Christian students, young adult and otherwise, have enough discipline and accountabiity to make God and his Spirit to be their Spirit of choice (along with some Coke and Sweet Tea).

Alexander Wilhelmsen

On a side note, I am limitless on the low end, meaning, I not only don't drink, but really never have and held it without it some side effect, and this is on barely anything to drink.

People have called me crazy before, but at least I'm straight up sober when I am. Life's too crazy to allow yourself to lose control of yourself... you know?

What'll be really scary is when you put up some post about premarital sex and divorce rates... and I don't remember what those are, but those are also statistics that are disheartening.

Luke Haggett

I went to a Christian University, one that just got their university status a few years ago after primarily being a Bible Collage. Sad to say but drinking is one of the number one problems at that school. I myself enjoy a pint here or there with a few friends that i know respect alcohol and do not abuse it. However, the problem at this school has far surpassed a the doctrinal debate of having a drink at all or not. I walked into the elevator of my dorm area in my senior year and was floored by a wall of aroma that was undoubtedly was an excesive night of drinking by a group of students. I was very sad at that moment, for the people involved, for my school, and for the state of Christianity in the younger demographic. These people at this school are those training to be the churches future leaders. These are the people who are equipping themselves for that task of ministry and there regretfully is nothing to distinguish them from any other college student in the country. The verse that comes to mind for me regarding drinking is,
Romans 12:1-2 "1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual[a] act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."
As a youth leader i believe we really need to equip our youth of today with not information and statistics about drinking, but rather have them involved with a deep walk with God that far surpasses that of many students. So when they leave for university they are not thinking about statistics or wright and wrong, they are at a place in their own relationship with God that they will know for themselves that they no longer want to conform to the pattern of this world, but would rather transform their mind with the things of God rather then alcohol.

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