This is the first time I’ve made it through a Eugene Peterson book, although I love him as an author. I actually wrote him a letter (just addressed to him and the city he lived in since I had no street address) once about the way he translated something in Galatians in the Message and he wrote me back. No only was it personal, but it was thorough and inspiring to me.
Needless to say, I looked forward to putting this book on my lent schedule and it was great for me.
Here’s some take aways:
- p.10, “As a culture, we are great at beginnings. We set magnificent goals. But in the in-between, we don’t have much to write home about. When things get bad enough, we just make a new beginning, which we are very good at doing. Or we set a new goal or “vision” or “mission statement,” as we call it, which temporarily distracts us from what is going on right around us.”
- p.11, quoting Pope John Paul II, “Don’t look at the Western nations for models in your development. They know how to make things, but they don’t know how to live with them. They have acquired a mind-boggling technology, but they’ve forgotten how to raise their children.”
- p.58, Interestingly, [Christian spiritual regression] often takes place at the same time we’re becoming successful in the eyes of our peers, associates, employers, or congregations. But the life is leaking out. God and life have become disconnected.”
- p.81, Dom Gregory Dix notes a four time repeated sequence of verbs that come from Jesus at meal time: Taking, Blessed, Broke & Gave.
- p.84, “Jesus doesn’t criticize or condemn or reject our offering. ‘Two fish is all you can come up with?’ Can you imagine Jesus saying that to you at the table?”
- p.96, “Jesus doesn’t seem to require a unanimous vote before proceeding.”