Notable Quotes

Notable Quotes September 3, 2012

Last month I read Eugene Peterson’s A Long Obediencein the Same Direction: Discipleship in an Instant Society. It’s anear-classic, having remained in print for over 30 years and sold over 200,000copies. Here’s a sample of why:

“I am quitesure that for a pastor in Western culture at the dawn of the twenty-first century, the aspect of world that makes the work ofleading Christians in the way of faith most difficult is today’s passion forthe immediate and the casual. The Christian life cannot mature under suchconditions and in such ways.” (pp 16-17)

“We live inwhat one writer has called the ‘age of sensation.’ We think that if we don’t feelsomething there can be no authenticity in doing it. But the wisdom ofGod says something different: that we can act ourselves into a new wayof feeling much quicker than we can feel ourselves into a new way ofacting. Worship is an act that develops feelings for God, not a feelingfor God that is expressed in an act of worship.” (p 54)

“Evil isalways temporary. The worst does not last.” (p 89)

“All suffering,all pain, all emptiness, all disappointment is seed: sow it in God and he will,finally, bring a crop of joy from it.” (p 100)

“Christiandiscipleship is a process of paying more and more attention to God’srighteousness and less and less attention to our own; finding the meaning ofour lives not by probing our needs and motives andmorals but by believing in God’s will and purposes; making a map of thefaithfulness of God, not charting the rise and fall of our enthusiasms.” (p 133) 

“The ‘bottom’has a bottom; the heights are boundless.” (p 145)

“For all itsinterest in history the Bible never refers to the past as ‘the good old times.’The past is not, for the person of faith, a restored historical site that wetour when we are on vacation; it is a field that we plow and harrow and plantand fertilize and work for a harvest.” (p 168)

“Whererelationships are warm and expectancies fresh, we are already beginning toenjoy the life together that will be completed in our life everlasting. Whichmeans that heaven is like nothing quite so much as a good party.” (p 183)