by Christine Sine
As many of you know Eugene Peterson, died yesterday. He created The Message and authored over 30 books. His work has inspired millions of Christians around the world and his impact will continue for a long time to come as many of us continue to use his valuable resources. Evidently his life goal was:
to “change the pastoral imagination of pastors today,” to urge them “to slow down and to be present to their lives” so that they could help their congregations do the same, he said.
It is his writings on rhythm of life and reflections on psalms and also the Sabbath that have most inspired me as I have sort to develop my own “slowed down” rhythm and focus. The Contemplative Pastor and A Long Obedience in the Same Direction are the two of his books I have found most helpful. He writes not only as a theologian but also as a pastor and had so much to say not just for those who are in church leadership but for all of us who struggle to follow Jesus every day.
I was also impressed by the ways that he lived out his faith. It seemed to me that he was never looking for fame and fortune but often seemed unassuming and reticent to step forward – following God and the vocation God had given him because it was just that – God’s call on his life. He always seemed to be a man of humility and grace.
Eugene Peterson will be sadly missed by all of us. I am so glad that his legacy will live on through his writings. I pray that he will continue to influence all followers of Christ to seek the often challenging path of slowed down spirituality and balance that he so often talked about.
May he rest in the arms of God today who is I am sure welcoming Eugene with the words: “Well done good and faithful servant.”