In his book Purity 365
(Servant Books, 148 pages, $12.99), Jason Evert presents a year’s worth of quotes that aim to reinforce purity and cleanliness of heart. Jason speaks to tens of thousands of youth each year on the subject of chastity, and, from the clips I’ve seen of him, does a solid job of communicating this often-prickly subject.
Chastity is often confused with celibacy. However, celibacy is not engaging in sex; chastity is a pure and proper valuing of sex. Not everyone is called to be celibate. Everyone is called to be chaste, even—and especially—those who are married.
With this in mind, Jason’s book should be well-received by any serious Christian, not just youth or young adults.
is essentially a collection of quotes and passages of Scripture on the theme of chastity. Like the title infers, there is one entry for each day of the year. Though he heavily leans on modern holy men and women like Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, and St. Josemaria Escriva, Evert offers a wide range of voices from anonymous high school students, to ancient Christian mystics, to even his own at times.
Here are just a few of my favorite quotes from the book:
- “God assigns the dignity of every woman as a task to every man.” – Pope John Paul II
- “He did not say: You will not be troubled—you will not be tempted—you will not be distressed. But He said: 'You will not be overcome.'" – Saint Julian of Norwich
- “Lust is a poor, weak, whimpering whispering thing compared with the richness and energy of desire which will arise when lust has been killed.” – C.S. Lewis
A book like this seems awfully simple at first glance, nothing more than a collection of inspiring quotes. But don’t be deceived; this book is pure spiritual fire, the type of fire that purifies hearts. Reading and meditating on a chastity-related passage each day of the year is one of the best ways to grow in purity.
Reading through Purity 365
, and other books on chastity, is a definite spiritual discipline. Some of the classic spiritual disciplines of the Christian life include prayer, study, fasting, solitude, and so on. But I would add “intentional chastity” to that list as well. A pure heart is rarely just birthed. There is a gestation period. Persistent prayer, much meditation, and guardianship towards what enters your eyes and ears are all required.
I’ve found that once you decide to begin living a chaste life, doing so becomes that much harder. The temptations are more prevalent, old memories and images pop into your head more often, and the cultural voice telling you to just ‘give up’ grows louder. So, a book like Purity 365
is a needed weapon in the fight for purity. You are destined to have a pure heart, it is part of what Jesus came to offer you. Take it and fight this fight. Use all of the tools you can in this pursuit; this book is surely one.