The Christian life is not a quiet escape…

As quoted by James Calvin Schaap in The Professor’s Death Song,” Books & Culture, Eugene Peterson wrote the following comment on the Christian life while considering Psalm 121:

The Christian life is not a quiet escape to a garden where we can walk and talk uninterruptedly with our Lord; not a fantasy trip to a heavenly city where we can compare our blue ribbons and gold medals with others who have made it to the winner’s circle. The Christian life is going to God. In going to God Christians travel the same ground that everyone else walks on, breathe the same air, drink the same water, shop the same stores, read the same newspapers, are citizens under the same governments, pay the same prices for groceries and gasoline, fear the same dangers, are subject to the same pressures, get the same distresses, are buried in the same ground.

The difference is that each step we walk, each breath we breathe, we know we are preserved by God, we know we are accompanied by God, we know we are ruled by God; and therefore no matter what doubts we endure or what accidents we experience, the Lord will preserve us from evil, he will keep our life

I recommend James Calvin Schaap’s article also. Here. It’s a challenging statement of grace.

Ruminating… (Read that article first.) I have friends who are on Megan’s list. Another friend served 30 years for rape. Sometimes grace is hard to find. I can’t say I went out looking for friends with backgrounds like these. What can I say? I value the friend but would prefer their baggage to go away? Probably true. Tax collectors and sinners. Rapists? Shudder.

While I appreciate Eugene Peterson’s comment very much, I wonder if I actually agree with it, literally speaking. I mean, I agree with his point. But I wonder if Christians are called not just to walk the same ground as everyone else, but to seek out those who inhabit the ground where grace is most needed. Walk where no one else wants to tread. As a famous teacher once said, …not my will, but yours.”

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