The author discusses how discernment relates to the pursuit of truth, honor, purity, justice, and what we commend or condemn with our speech. These are very practical and challenging chapters that address issues of day-to-day holiness. These are also issues that affect our witness as we live in community with our neighbors and fellow Christians.
What is discernment? Is it knowing who to unfollow and who to mute? What books not to read? What foods and medicines will make you sick? If this is the case, then I just need to make the right choices about what to avoid, and all will be well. But what if discernment is more than just what and who to keep at arm’s length? What if discernment is not only rejecting the bad but also embracing what is good?
This is the argument Hannah Anderson makes in her book, All That’s Good: Recovering the Lost Art of Discernment. She writes that discernment is not just a life hack or tips and tricks. It’s being “changed by wisdom” and becoming “people who know the difference between what’s bad and what’s good, what’s good and what’s better.” (pg. 14) It is a quality of life to be cultivated that goes deeper than a checklist. Thus “discernment does not change the challenges we face; it changes our ability to face them.” (pg. 25)