I can’t overstate my deep appreciation of Eugene Peterson enough. He’s the kind of pastor, mentor & author whose writing, inspires, resources and warms me! His most recent writing, I loved last summer when I first read it. Usually it takes me a couple of weeks to get through a Eugene book, sentences and paragraphs are usually enough to make me stop in my tracks and have to ponder on them for a good while before daring to go any further. The beauty is sometimes just to much to take.
‘The Pastor‘ however is more story, calling and context of ministry faithfulness in one context for 30 years. It’s a book that cuts through all the silliness that can sometimes surround church leadership. Here there is a simple conviction there is something deeper going on in our life together as the body of Christ here on earth.
Here’s a quote that captures something of this,…….
“……. I want to be a patient pastor. I want to have eyes to see and ears to hear what God is doing and saying in lives. I don’t want to judge in terms of what I think people should be doing. I want to be a witness to what God is doing in their lives, not a school teacher handing out grades for how well they are doing something for God. I think I see something unique about being a pastor that I had never noticed: the pastor is the one person in the community who is free to take men and women seriously as they are, appreciate them just as they are, give them the dignity that derives from being the ‘image of God’, a God created being who has eternal worth without having to prove usefulness or be good for anything… I don’t want to be so impatient with the mess that I am not around to see the miracle being formed. I don’t want to concieve of my life as pastor so functionally that the mystery gets squeezed out of both me and the congregation.”